Two men cornered her on a dark street. Then she saw a car, and a glimmer of hope : NPR
This story is part of the My Unsung Hero series, from the Hidden Brain team, about people whose kindness left a lasting impression on someone else.
In 1994, Leah Bartell was 20 years old and living on her college campus. One night, she went to a friend’s house across campus.
Around 2:30am, she left to make the long walk home. While she was walking down a dark street, two men approached her.
“They were both really tall, and I’m about five feet tall and short. And they were clearly drunk,” she recalled.
One of them moved in front of her, and the other followed her. She did not know what to do, and she was afraid.
“I didn’t know what was going to happen, but I knew it was going to be bad,” she said.
Suddenly, a car pulled up, and a man and a woman got out.
“The man asked me, ‘Are you okay?’ And I said, ‘No'”.
The man started talking to the two strangers, to leave her alone. Bartell is not sure what happened next between the men, because at that point, she started running.
“I was so terrified. I ran straight to my house and locked the doors,” she said.
Almost 30 years later, Bartell still thinks about those strangers who helped her that night. If she could address them today, she would say this: “Thank you for noticing what so many people were driving forward. And for speaking at a moment when you didn’t have to.”
My Unsung Hero is also a podcast — new episodes are released every Tuesday. To share your unsung hero story with the Hidden Brain team, record a voice memo on your phone and send it to firstname.lastname@example.org.