Haiti Rescue: Saving the Man Who Saved My Life
Why did Bill deserve a special mission? Not just because he saved my life. Helping people is what Bill Nathan does. Orphaned at age seven, Bill was taken in as a slave by his neighbors who forced him to do domestic work and beat him mercilessly when he did not perform to standard. According to UNICEF studies, such child slaves number as many as 300,000 in Haiti; typically, desperate parents yield their children to fraudulent recruiters willingly, a phenomenon that becomes more pronounced after natural disasters. After three years of bondage, Bill was rescued by an American nun who had known Bill's mother. She brought him to St. Joseph's, where he thrived and soon he was managing the recovery of hundreds of other boys. "God kept me alive for a reason," he told me in a fleeting moment of lucidity. "I will keep doing the work that I'm doing." There is a theory of massive disaster triage that advises that the first people who should receive treatment are doctors with non-life threatening injuries. Though Bill is not a doctor, he has a demonstrated ability to improve the lives of hundreds, and to resurrect his community and his country. Saving Bill means saving more lives.