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The homeless man lay face down and motionless on a sidewalk in New York City while blood from multiple knife wounds pooled underneath his body. He had tried to save someone’s life, and now, when he needed it most, no one would try to save his.

31-year old Hugo Alfredo Tale-Yax had fallen on hard times since immigrating to America from Guatemala. His situation deteriorated so greatly that he found himself homeless on the mean streets of America’s largest city. But Tale-Yax was just as human as he was homeless…and he proved it on April 18, 2010.

Very early that morning, Tale-Yax was walking behind a man and a woman when he witnessed the man attack the woman. With selfless abandon, the young, homeless immigrant committed himself to her defense. The robber turned on Tale-Yax and stabbed him several times. Video surveillance recorded the woman and the robber running off in different directions while Tale-Tax slumped over on the sidewalk.

Now it was the Good Samaritan who needed a Good Samaritan.

But he would not get one.

Cameras positioned on the building tops showed at least twenty people walk by Tale-Tax’s body without stopping to help. One person even lifted the young man’s body, before noticing the blood and walking away.

After more than an hour passed, emergency workers finally responded to a 911 call. It was too late. The young hero had already died.

Local residents of the working-class Queens community were unnerved by the way Tale-Yax died. “Is anybody human anymore?” asked Raechelle Groce. “What’s wrong with humanity?”

“I think it’s horrific,” exclaimed Marla Cohan, a teacher whose school was across the street from where Tale-Yax died. “I think people are just afraid to step in; they don’t want to get involved; who knows what their reasons are?”

Regardless of the reasons, others suffer when people who can take action, don’t.

Click here for the online report.

Topics Illustrated Include:
Golden Rule
Good Samaritan
Taking Action

(Resource cataloged by David R Smith)