Losing a young family member, especially offspring, tends to bring out the true character of a person. Having no offspring of my own, I’m loath to pass any judgment on the response of any parent to the loss of his/her child. I only contrast two examples of how such a loss can be viewed.
I will say this: losing a child often brings out hidden (or not-so-hidden) character traits in a person. A jerk doesn’t necessarily stop being a jerk when tragedy befalls; likewise with an honorable person. Additionally the character of the bereaved can undergo radical change after such a devastating loss, for the better or for the worse. I wonder how--or if--such was the case for either of the following two people. I only hope and pray that I never have to be in their position.
From Michael Berg, father of Nicholas Berg, infamously slaughtered by Islamists:
People ask me why I focus on putting the blame for my son's tragic and atrocious end on the Bush administration. They ask: "Don't you blame the five men who killed him?" I have answered that I blame them no more or less than the Bush administration, but I am wrong: I am sure, knowing my son, that somewhere during their association with him these men became aware of what an extraordinary man my son was. I take comfort that when they did the awful thing they did, they weren't quite as in to it as they might have been. I am sure that they came to admire him.
I am sure that the one who wielded the knife felt Nick's breath on his hand and knew that he had a real human being there. I am sure that the others looked into my son's eyes and got at least a glimmer of what the rest of the world sees. And I am sure that these murderers, for just a brief moment, did not like what they were doing.From Eva Savage, mother of Marine Lance Corporal Jeremiah Savage, KIA in Iraq:
My son could work at McDonald's and he could get killed by somebody coming in with a gun for the money in the till. He could be driving a car and get hit and be killed. He could walk across the street and be shot. If he dies as a Marine in another country fighting for what he believes in, then he's died with honor and I'm going to hold onto that.Lance Corporal Savage was also the nephew of blogger DizzyGirl. Please go and give her your condolences on her loss.