Where the Angels Were


“Life is not the way it’s supposed to be. It’s the way it is.

The way we cope with it is what makes the difference.”

–Virginia Satir

 As the horrific events at the Boston Marathon unfolded before our eyes, we couldn’t help but gaze in complete dismay at our tiny smartphones and large flatscreen televisions. Is there not a shred of decency in this world? The unspeakable evil bombarded us from all sides.

But angels quickly emerged, first in resplendent robes of lime green, emblazoned with “Police,” “Fire,” “Physician,” and “EMS,”

Undercover angels materialized from the smoke, less elegantly clad in running shoes and shorts.


Chariots of Fire, red and blue, rolled in accompanied by trumpets taking the form of wailing sirens.

Nearby, legions of angels in white mobilized in citadels dedicated to saving lives in the aftermath.

These angels in the arena of dust, sweat and blood, spent themselves in a labor of love and service to their fellowman. At that moment in time, there was no higher calling.

And they coped, without the distraction of blame, bigotry, judgment, or intolerance. That’s what made the difference. And, that’s what made them angels.


Showing 21 comments

  • Ken Abels (CPD Sgt. Retired)

    Nice, thank You

  • Peach

    Home of the brave and why we are free.

  • Mary Therese Franzak

    How beautifully stated thanks

  • Cindy

    THanks again for your wonderful way with words, Jim. In addition to those angels, I was also touched by the indomitable spirit of Americans as they reacted at the baseball field and hockey rink. Sometimes not a good idea to “awake the sleeping tiger!”

  • Phil

    Well done Jim! There are Angels among us! Thank God!

  • Jim Nemec ret. CPD Mobile Unit

    Well said!

  • Greg Bernacki (RET CPD)

    As I sat in the comfort of our home watching the events in Boston, the first thing I noticed is the Police running toward the detonations. Almost all the civilians started going in the opposite direction. Our Brothers in Boston ran toward the explosions(some civilians too).

    We do (did) GOD’s work………..Don’t forget that ever……

    God Loves His Warriors………..

    God Bless our Brothers and Sisters in Blue………

    God Save the United States……….

  • MaryAnn Dykema

    I too noticed how these brave men and women ran TOWARDS the smoke, screems and blood. They seemed to have no worry for their own safety. The smoke was still rising in the air as they immediately ran toward it. I sat and wonder what would I do? I am afraid, being a regular citizen, I too would be going in the other direction, away from the danger.

    I thank God for those who did not. Your words, Jim, are eloquent with praise for those who answer the call of those in need. You people who have been, and those that still are, on the front lines are a special breed for sure. Thanks for all of you who have answered those of us in need of help.


  • Bill Mages

    Beautifully said. Thanks, Jim!

  • Philip Wizenick

    This photo is from 1953 at the remains of fire on the 900 block of W. North Ave. I am old enough to remember those Black Ford wagons. [image: Inline image 1]

  • Tom Zimmerman

    Well said, well put Jim!

  • Fred J. Gillen

    Right you are Jim! Thanks for pointing it out.

  • Mary Rita Shull

    Jim, You are so eloquent and this piece is so very touching. Your closing: “And they coped, without the distraction of blame, bigotry, judgment, or intolerance. That’s what made the difference. And, that’s what made them angels.” – amazing. Thank you for putting these thoughtful words down for us.

  • Kathleen Nolan OMalley

    Again you hit it on the head! Thank You!

  • mary hedeen

    God gifted all First Responders, Police, Firefighters, Nurses and Doctors a wonderful quality the rest of us lack – Pure Courage and Grace!

  • Dan Guiney

    Another one well done, Thanks Jim.
    Mt 5:9 Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called sons of God.

    • jimpadar

      Thanks Dan, so good to hear from you!

  • depriestmr

    You express what many of us wish we could put into words; and you do it so eloquently. You bring heart tugs, tears and memories. After a situation is over, how many of us have had the thought of ..”What the hell was I doing?”. We were CARING! Many times that means going in when others are fleeing. Putting others first and not ourselves.
    I tell all of you to polish your halo and straighten your wings it’s roll call time.

    • jimpadar

      Thank you so much… you’ve been there, done that so your words are especially appreciated.

  • Bill Kushner

    Simply, elegantly stated. Thank you and God Bless!

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