Boy in England has a Newmarket teen and the Internet to thank for his life
by Monica Bugajski
A 14-year-old girl in Newmarket knew a cry for help when she heard one and managed to save a 16-year-old boy's life all the way in England.
For thousands, the Internet has become a place to form friendships with people that they may never meet in person. For others, it is a place to torment those they won't ever have to see. Though all 14-year-old Paige Dayal knew about Luke was his name, she was particularly unsettled by the comments on his Tumblr account one night and decided she had to reach out a helping hand.
For those of you who may be unfamiliar with Tumblr, it's a blogging platform that allows users to share photos, audio, video, and any opinions they may have. Tumblr users can follow one another and comment on each other's posts. Paige had 600 followers on her Tumblr account, and Luke was one of them.
On February 7, a despondent Luke made a post in which he said that he didn't have any friends and that everyone hated him. His blog was bombarded by hate comments telling him that he was worthless and that he should end his life.
Paige read the post and comments, and after Luke stopped posting, she had an irksome feeling that he was perhaps going to do something drastic. Only knowing that Luke lived in England, Paige called the police and the RCMP. When they said they couldn't help, she did some online sleuthing and found Luke's town. She was able to contact the central police in the Bath region, who arrived at Luke's house just in time. The 16-year-old boy had swallowed 36 pills and had to be rushed to the emergency room.
Had Paige not acted on her concern, Luke may not have made it through the night, and though it isn't the first of its kind, the incident reminds us that people really can affect one another's lives, regardless of the platform through which they interact.
Paige's mother believes the most important lesson here is that "one person can make a difference" in someone's life, and she's absolutely right. The Internet just allows that impact to happen quicker and from anywhere and everywhere. Though it seems amazing that Paige was able to hear Luke's cry for help all the way across the ocean, she was very much a part of his world. Every time he got on his computer, he had access to her thoughts and posts, and she to his. So it seems natural that she should step in when he needed help, the only thing is, she was the only one who actually did something. Yes, others offered support. For all the negative comments he got, Luke received hundreds of encouraging ones. But Paige is unique in that she had the sense to take her support offline and into the real world. She can honestly say that she played a key role in saving this boys life.
Though Luke is doing better, he knows he has a rough journey to recovery ahead. On his Tumblr he posted, "I am so grateful to the girl in Canada who rang the police. Seriously I LOVE YOU," and those who love him are grateful as well.
[Source: The Star]
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