The time for help­ing those in need

The Western Star - - Editorial -

The im­pact of tragedy is felt far greater in small com­mu­ni­ties. It’s worn by ev­ery­one, young and old, and af­fects us all in some way. News of a death does not rip­ple through towns in this prov­ince; it’s a ti­dal wave of hurt and it drowns ev­ery­one in the pain felt by the fam­i­lies in­volved.

This week’s car ac­ci­dent near How­ley was dev­as­tat­ing. Three peo­ple died and more were hurt. Two com­mu­ni­ties in White Bay — Sop’s Arm and Pol­lard’s Point — are reel­ing from this news and try­ing to come to grips with the tragedy as fam­i­lies mem­bers try des­per­ately to cope.

Death — sud­den death in par­tic­u­lar — smacks through the fi­bre of ev­ery small com­mu­nity and shakes is foun­da­tion. Ac­ci­dents, such as the one this week — and the dozen or so in the past month — change a town, even if for a brief few days.

Large cities are more im­mune to that type of dam­age. The news in cities trav­els fast, yes, but the peo­ple are not con­nected by the same type of thread, and the im­pact is less­ened.

There’s also the fre­quency in which those in larger cen­tres deal with news of this na­ture. Crime alone causes more tragedy in cities and the fact more peo­ple are on the move causes more ac­ci­dents and there­fore more tragedy. Fam­i­lies af­fected still feel the same hurt, but the wider re­ver­ber­a­tion is smaller.

This is no love let­ter for city life, how­ever. Run­ning in the op­po­site di­rec­tion is the level of sup­port a com­mu­nity feels in times of tragedy. Yes, there is sup­port in a city for all tragedy. You don’t need to look fur­ther than Hous­ton over the past few weeks so see the shin­ing light of hu­man­ity there. How­ever, for a per­sonal dev­as­ta­tion, the smaller the town, the more it puts those suf­fer­ing on its shoul­ders.

Pol­lard’s Point and Sop’s Arm are go­ing through it now.

Cow Head is as well.

Labrador, same thing.

Th­ese are com­mu­ni­ties (yes, Labrador is a re­gion, but close-knit enough to qual­ify), like all oth­ers in the prov­ince that take care of their own and nurse them in times of need. An un­ex­pected death in the com­mu­nity is def­i­nitely a time of need.

There is noth­ing we can do to re­verse any of the ac­ci­dents seen over the past few weeks, un­for­tu­nately. And we all know there’s lit­tle so­lace in the fact many were pre­ventable. But what we can do is reach out to each other and lend a hand. In do­ing so, we all help those suf­fer­ing in this, the great­est time of need.

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