Recalling Kassig's warmth and empathy

November 17, 2014 8:05 AM

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Recalling Kassig's warmth and empathy

Despite not speaking Arabic and hardly knowing a thing about the region, his empathy and warmth were so obvious that even the most conservative and anti American Syrian refugees came to adore him. He'd live for days in the hospital, pulling long shifts strictly as a volunteer, and was even jokingly nicknamed Abu Homsi by his colleagues and patients because they just couldn't believe this former American soldier was working for nothing simply to help people. For about eight months he lived in my apartment in between trips to Tripoli, Turkey, and eventually Syria.

His presence drew some media attention and eventually Arwa Damon of CNN profiled him and his work, which led to a flood of people asking how they could help support his efforts. As a result, as soon as he graduated from Butler University that summer, he began to set up an organization to funnel dona...

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