CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- A few Sundays back, I wrote about a friend's Facebook "question of the day" that asked people to share experiences that made them "fall in love with the human race." The stories shared made me feel so much better about people in general that I decided to ask the same question of readers.
The response was encouraging, with a few being meaty enough to deserve a whole column.
Wrote Nancy Kimble: "I was involved in a head-on collision and the man behind me used his CB (this was before cell phones) to call for help, came to my car, helped open the door, and held my hands while the EMTs placed my fractured leg on the backboard. He followed the ambulance to the hospital and waited until my family arrived to give his name as a witness to the accident. The person that collided with me was DUI, no driver's license and no insurance. I'll never forget him holding my hands."
Sue Ellen Anderson wrote about the time when she was 24 years old and driving from Augusta, Ga., to Gainesville, Fla., late on a Sunday evening when she realized she was nearly out of gas.
"I only had my dad's Amoco card and I couldn't find an Amoco station that was still open," wrote Anderson. "I had my checkbook, but no one would cash an out-of-state check for me. I was getting scared.
"Finally, a man working at an Exxon station in a small town in Georgia said that while the station wouldn't cash my personal check, he would. I still remember the name of that man I met for just a few minutes, over 43 years ago. Elmer Fender. What a guy."
From Tam Mallory of Charleston: "Back in the '50s, my parents and I were traveling through the Great Smokies. We were traversing up a particularly steep section of the mountainous road and our car started to overheat. As my dad pulled off the road, another vehicle stopped to render assistance.
"A small pinhole leak was discovered in the radiator hose. Since no tape was available to patch the hole, the young man, whose wife and toddler were standing nearby, offered the only solution he could think of -- a diaper.
"The impromptu solution held until we arrived in the closest town and replaced the hose, and the diaper was kept as a reminder of the generous souls who crossed our path that day."
Wrote Janet Yeager: "My husband is handicapped from a stroke and has to use a scooter to get around. He often rides his scooter from our house in a residential section of Madison to the downtown area of our small town.
"Recently, while he was on one of his downtown excursions, he lost his wallet. He returned home and wasn't even aware of his loss until the telephone rang. It was a lady who found the wallet and wanted to return it. She said she would be waiting on Main Street. I told her I would be right down."