Many folks live alone. Some have no family or friends to look after and check on them. I know we all lead busy, hectic lives, but if you have a neighbor needing assistance with light chores or shopping or who might just need some company and companionship, carve out some time in your schedule for them. They’ll most definitely appreciate it and you’ll feel better for doing something for someone else too.

Growing up, my family and I had a mail carrier who loved our dog. He’d always have a treat for our sweet golden retriever, named Sally. Despite his busy route, Tom still took a moment to say hello and chat with us. 

The mail carrier in this story, Lisa Sweeny, reminds me so much of Tom and so many others who deliver our mail. They come to know and care for those they see often.

Eighty-seven-year-old Marie Boyer’s home has been on Lisa’s route for the past 13 years. Lisa and Marie have spoken and come to know one another over the years.

Lisa knew Marie’s habits too, so one day when she noticed the older woman’s mail and garbage piling up outside her home, Lisa grew concerned.

“I decided I should call 911,” Lisa said. “I mean, I didn’t know, but my heart told me she was inside.”

Thank goodness for Lisa’s persistence and worry! Marie had slipped and fallen inside her home four days earlier. All the windows and doors were closed so no one heard her desperate cries for help. Marie fell in and out of consciousness; she was dehydrated and slowly dying.

“I remember thinking to myself, I didn’t want to die that way,” Marie said about those horrible days she spent on the floor.

Thankfully, Lisa listened when her gut told her to check on the elderly woman. The FDNY and NYPD found Marie just in time. She was alive, but barely clinging to life.

Now, Lisa and Marie’s bond is stronger than ever. Maria has moved to an assisted living facility and Lisa visits her often.

This is a good lesson for all of us. We often ignore those feelings inside because we think others might judge us or think we’re overreacting. But you never know – you could save someone’s life.


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