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The following opinion column was submitted by Fran Spadafora Manzella.

Submit guest columns to jalmendarez@ithacavoice.com.

I am writing to thank some very kind people who helped me one dark, crisp Friday night after someone hit my car. I want to thank them all publicly as there is so much pain,violence, and negativity happening in our world that I wanted to highlight the kindness and generosity of strangers who came to the aid of a stranger in distress.

On Friday, November 6th, Gallery Night in Ithaca, as I was driving up 96B, and just passing the intersection of 96B and Clinton St., the left side of my car was hit and severely damaged by an oncoming vehicle turning left (no one was hurt!). I was unable to move the car very far out of the way of traffic and traffic was immediately obstructed by the accident.

A kind woman driving ahead of me with a melodic name I wish I could remember, immediately pulled over and started directing traffic at risk to her own safety. She stayed until the police arrived and I wish I could thank her for her selflessness and generosity of time in person.

Two Ithaca College students living near by also came to my aid. Alexis and Kelly helped me calm my dog Una who was quite upset from the impact. They walked and petted her until she calmed down and stayed with her so I could take care of business. I appreciate their kindness, sensitivity, and support during a very difficult time.

I want to thank the police officers who came to the scene of the accident for their calm intervention and especially a female officer who understood my distress, made sure I was okay, and talked about her own dogs to calm me as we waited for the tow truck.

I also want to thank my friends Sue and Mike who came out on a dark and chilly night to take me home.

There is truly simple kindness in the world that we sometimes fail to recognize in the midst of the opposite happening all around us.  Happy Thanksgiving everyone.

Fran Spadafora Manzella
Town of Ithaca

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