Thursday, February 20, 2014

No title needed (and I absolutely remember)

from: Van
to: ""
date: Thu, Feb 20, 2014 at 11:33 AM
subject: Hello

You probably don't remember me but I remember you. 2 summers ago I was on a train heading to Oshawa sitting opposite you on the aisle. I was crying and not doing a very good job at hiding it. I had just learned that afternoon that my dad's cancer had come back and the outlook was really bad. You got up from your seat and crouched down to talk quietly beside me. I remember you had this orange bag and you pulled out some kleenex which I really appreciated because I knew I was a mess. I couldn't bring myself to tell you what was wrong but I really appreciated it when you said that you hoped that whatever is, I would get through it. Then the guy next to me put his feet on the seat when some people got off at Whitby and you cut him so much side eye I couldn't help but laugh. I remember you told me you had a website where you wrote about people like him. I read about you today in 24 Hours. In your picture on your site, you looked very familiar even though you have lost some weight since then (Congratulations by the way) that I was sure it was you. I don't ride the Lakeshore train any more now that my mother and I have moved to Markham but I still commute by GO. I'm sorry to tell you that my dad has passed on but I wanted to just write you and tell you that I have never forgotten your act of kindness and your compassion. 

PS. Please put this on your website. The Toronto Sun comments were appalling. You are a good person.


Vanessa said...

Thank you editing and adding the PS. It's important. The way you're being trashed is just gross.

C.J. Smith said...

It's a only a few people who can't help themselves. I'll survive. But no, thank you, Vanessa. I just about swallowed my heart when I got your email.

LM said...

I know CJ personally. We used to work together advocating for victims of road tragedies. She is nothing like how the Sun article made her out to be. I think people just saw the word snarky and ran with it. Vanessa, please accept my heartfelt condolences for losing your father. I'm so sorry you had to go through that.

mike f. said...

Thanks for sharing Vanessa. So sorry to learn about your dad. Hits real close to home for me.

Anonymous said...


C.J. Smith said...

No. Different person.

Anonymous said...

Oh. just noticed the dates don't line up. my bad. I read your site religiously and remembered you mentioning someone crying. Don't be creeped out.