15 People Share The Most Heartbreaking Thing They've Ever Witnessed.
Have you ever seen something that makes you just stop?
People on Reddit were asked: "What has been the most heartbreaking thing you've personally witnessed?" These are some of the best answers.
1/15 My granddad crying as he kissed my mum's cheek and stroked her hair about 15 minutes after she had passed away. My mum was my grandparents only child. To this day I have no idea how they have managed to carry on.
2/15 9. It was about 2am on a rainy Monday night and I was driving home through empty suburbs. Suddenly I turned into a smallish road and was blocked off by a an ambulance.
I was about to reverse and find another way when I see two paramedics bring out an old lady on the trolley who was very much dead. These three were followed by a very old man, probably 80+, who followed behind trying to hold the woman's hand. He was bawling, falling over himself, getting soaked by the rain and shouting. He was shouting "She's my soulmate! What do I do now? what am i supposed to do?"
Something about an older proud man brought to their knees kills me.
3/15 Today, while at work (library), a man came in and one of our regular patrons, a teen who's probably 15 or 16, came running up to him and gave him a hug. Turns out, the man is the teen's father. Now, through two years of seeing this kid almost every day, I know a few things about him: he's in foster care, his mom OD'd last year, he grew up on the streets, he was abused by several of his mom's boyfriends.
So I was surprised to see he had a dad, honestly. But it became quickly apparent (to everyone else) that the dad wasn't that in to seeing his son. But the boy could not see that. He was talking all about his life, his group home, his younger brothers, etc. Then he says, "Why don't we go to lunch? Let's go to Wendy's" (right across the street.) The dad goes, "Sure, let me go get my wallet, I'll be right back." And he walks out the door and doesn't come back. At all.
This kid stood in the middle of the library for like an hour, then went back and forth between us and Wendy's for the rest of the day. A co-worker and I ended up sitting in the parking lot with this kid for like two hours after we closed, just letting him cry.
This is a teenager who has seen and experienced the very worst things, many of them probably at the hands of his father, and yet he wanted so desperately to be part of his life. I've literally never felt so gutted in my life.
4/15 Back in about 1992, I was walking to a friend's place, when with no tyre scream, there's a horrific car crash. I ran over to see a car had t-barred another at a roundabout.
At this point, my St. Johns training kicked in and I told someone to go call an ambulance. The situation is thus: the driver who rammed the other car smells like a brewery, and is dead. He's also the driver who caused the accident by pushing through the roundabout.
I get to the other car, and there's a girl, she's pretty messed up. The steering collumn has puncher her in the chest, there's blood everywhere.
I tell her that I know first aid, and that I'm not trying to grope her as a joke - trying to figure out the extent of her ijuries. But I can feel all her ribs on her left side f*cked up, and even at the lightest tough, she's hurting.
So I start talking to her, saying everything's alright, well it's not, but the ambulance is coming, and start making shitty jokes at her to keep her awake.
Then I hear the ambulance in the distance, and tell her she's gonna be alright.
She looks me in the eye, and says, "Why didn't I meet you earlier?" and dies. Turns out, thirty seconds can be an eternity.
5/15 My mother died in July 2009 from a massive heart attack. She was in the hospital for a few months because of many health issues and her cancer had come back. I remember laying on the couch the morning she passed--because I had fallen asleep the night before--and kept hearing the phone ring. In my half asleep stupor, I just went upstairs. I remember thinking as I got into bed, "wouldn't it be weird if it were the hospital calling?" I laid in bed and just listened as the phone rang again. I thought my dad would pick it up because he had a phone in his room, but he was out cold. I finally got out of bed because I couldn't get back to sleep and answered it. Someone from the hospital was indeed calling and asked for my dad. I knew exactly what they were about to tell him. I just went upstairs, knocked on his door, and handed the phone over to him.
I then went downstairs and sat with my brother (who had fallen asleep on the other couch), and I felt absolutely numb because I knew what news was coming. My father came downstairs and just said that my mother was gone, and we had to go to the hospital. My brother and I got dressed, and we all left to go pick up my older brother at his apartment. We just drove there in silence. We arrived, met a nurse, and they took us to her room. My little brother and I sat on the other side of the curtain because neither of us could bear to see the body. My older brother and father stepped around the curtain, and the nurse pulled the sheet from my mother's face.
The next sound I heard was the most heart wrenching as my father let out a soul-numbing scream and started crying. I could hear his heart breaking in that scream, which broke mine as well. To this day, it is the worst sound I have ever heard in my entire life, and I still hear it whenever I think of that day.
6/15 I've walked the same 40 minute route to work for about 5 years now, every day I passed the same old guy and his German Shepherd walking beside him with no lead, carrying an old battered tennis ball, I figured he went to the corner shop for morning paper or whatever.
Anyway a few months ago there was no dog, and the guy was carrying the tennis ball, and has done so ever since.
7/15 I was driving down my street one day, and there was a dead bunny in the road. Right next to it, there was another bunny, just looking at the dead one. I had somewhere to be, so I couldn't stop.
About 3 hours later, I'm coming home, and still, the bunny's looking at the dead one, in the exact same spot. I can't be sure, but I have a feeling he never moved. I went home and got some lettuce, then walked back to the bunny. I was sure he was going to bolt, but he stayed still. I sat down, gave him some lettuce, and talked to him. He ate the lettuce almost absentmindedly, just staring at the dead bunny. You could almost see the sadness in this little guy's eyes. After about 10 minutes, I decided to give him some privacy.
As I got up to go, I notice, in the mess that was the dead bunny, were what looked like little baby bunnies. The poor thing had been pregnant.
8/15 I was at a gun range when I saw some guy abusing a small dog. I walked over to them to leave the dog alone and I realized this dog was only a puppy and was obviously scared shitless. I have never seen people act so cruelly towards a helpless animal. I went off on those bastards. I got in each of their faces and I threatened them in every way I knew how. I told them that if they shot that dog I would shoot each one of them and not give a flying f*ck about the loss of their scumbag lives. I picked that puppy up and took her to my house. She will be nine this year and is one of the greatest dogs I have ever had. In honor of where I found her I gave her the name of Annie Oakley.
9/15 I was 8 or 9, riding in the back seat of my dad's car on a really rainy day, heading home from my grandma's house. We're stopped at a red light next to this bus stop, and I'm watching this father and son trying to cross the street to get to the stop with their bag of McDonald's, in the heavy rain with no umbrella. The dad let the kid run ahead so he could get under the little shelter thingy, before our light turned and they wouldn't be able to cross safely. So the dad is stuck on the other side of the road as the cars start to move, and the poor guy gets hit with a tidal wave from a car passing him. Completely soaks his food to the point where the bottom of the bag fell out. I will never forget the look of defeat he had on his face, standing there soaking wet, having just lost his and his son's dinner. And then they still had to wait for the bus. I think that was the first time I ever empathized with someone I didn't know. I felt so terrible for him.
10/15 A few years back a guy sat by me on the bus home, he must have been in his late 70s/early 80s. He starts chatting to me for no reason which I don't mind because I like chatting to the elderly, they've got wicked stories. Anyway, I notice he is wearing a butterfly broach on his cardigan so I commented it that it was nice and unusual (clearly because it was a woman's but I thought he was giving zero f*cks and wearing what he wanted). He responded that he'd bought it for his wife that morning in the town but then remembered that she was dead but he wanted to keep it because he knew she'd have liked it. I wanted to take him home after that.
11/15 My SO and I went to a garage sale. It was a pretty merge selection with kids running everywhere, stuff that belongs in a tip for sale, and a single box of kittens. These kittens were so obviously too young to be weaned. Tiny mewling things, eyes either barely open or still sealed shut. I inquired about the kitten's mother. Apparently run over accidentally. Heavily implied that kittens not sold today would be 'gotten rid of' (we read killed) Kids are running around with tiny kittens and throwing them around. One kid comes up to me and happily exclaimed "This one's name is Burny because he got burned on his face!" and shoves the poor little burnt kitten in my face. I bought every single f*cking kitten, fed them with bottles until old enough, wormed and flea treated them then found homes for them. It cost us a heap but f*ck me, who can do that to animals?
12/15 Two of my friends in college were high school sweethearts. Due to a freak heart malfunction, they guy suddenly died while we were sledding my sophomore year. The girl remained close with his family, still calling his parents mom and dad. Ten years later, she was finally getting married to a new guy, but invited her high school sweetheart's parents as they are still close. The parents sat in the back row, and the father shook with sobs as he watched the wedding that should have been his son's.
13/15 My dad lying on a table inside a coffin. It looked wrong, surreal, like I was staring at an optical illusion. That couldn't be him. That's not how he looks when he's asleep. He was found a week early by a secretary, face down on his desk, simply dead. We had no forewarning. My mom broke the news to me while she was huddled in a blanket after school, saying dad had some heart trouble last night but the doctors couldn't save him. A few hours before I saw him on the table my mom walked into my room while I was lost in video games and just said, "You know his heart failure was because of a bad mixture of medication?" I responded that I did know, that he had been careless and apparently had a weak heart none of us knew about. "Well," my mom started, "...it was intentional." She left it at that.
I couldn't even process that thought at the viewing. I just stood thinking mechanical thoughts. Mom's crying. I should hug her. My mouth's dry. I'm going to get some water. I was in my late teens and wanted to be strong for the rest of my family, so I didn't cry while holding the woman who a few weeks ago held me while I was having a panic attack over a math test. Over a hundred people came to the viewing. I found out my dad, who was a lawyer, had given many people large discounts just because they were in a tough spot. I found out he was a great debater and won the national debate competition. I found out I was losing a man greater than even I thought. Then I had to line up as every person walked by the family, offered their condolences, and then stood over the wrong looking body, reflecting. I didn't cry through all those hugs and tears others shed. That is, until I looked up to see who was next in line for me to mechanically hug and recognized the face. It was my high school math teacher. I hated this man. I had panic attacks over my grade in his class. He seemed absolutely uncaring and almost enjoyed making students' lives trigonometric torment. But here he was, on the verge of tears himself, standing in front of me. He just hugged me quickly and whispered, "I was in the area...and thought I should drop by." That's when I dropped all the pieces of myself I was desperately holding together. My dad committed suicide and I don't even know why. Oh god, the last time I talked to him I was yelling at him about SATs. He's gone forever. How am I going to live? Who's going to talk to me at 3:00am when we both find ourselves sleepless? Why did he kill himself? I'm so sorry dad. I'm so sorry. I just kept apologizing in my head and was escorted into the hallway by an aunt until I regained composure.
14/15 When I was about 14, my mom was bringing me and my friends back home from school. We noticed there was an accident on the street before mine. After we got home we all walked to the accident to be idiot spectators. We approached a group of people that had already gathered and asked what happened.
It turns out that a guy was riding his motorcycle back home because his wife's baby shower was winding down. Well, as he was turning on to his street a driver ploughed right into him and he was killed instantly. He was about 5 houses away from his home. His wife was just sitting on the side of the road in shock.
15/15 When I was a correctional officer, I would often times escort inmates to and from the hospital for medical treatment. There was one inmate, Fredricks was his name I believe, who had been diagnosed with a heart condition. He was about 50 years old and a born again Christian, as many inmates are.
Over a period of about 6 months he shed about 150-200 lbs. He went from being a relatively heavy set guy to skin and bones. At one point, he had to be transferred to another larger hospital, so I rode in the back of the ambulance with him while the other officer followed us in the prison van.
I still remember the conversation we had to this day. I was known for always carrying Jolly Ranchers in my pocket. He asked me if I had any that I could share with him. I told him I didn't, but if I did I would certainly share them with him. That was against the rules, but I don't think anyone would have said anything about me sharing a piece of candy with a dying man.
I could see his hands were shaking, and I could hear the hand-cuffs and chains clinking. We had to wrap the belly chain around him twice because he had become so thin.
He looked at me and said, "I'm scared." I could tell he was holding back tears. I didn't know what to say so I just told him that he was gonna be okay. After I got relieved from my post, I told him I would see him next week, as my days off were coming up.
I never saw him again. He died a few days later. I heard the State buried him because no family ever showed up to claim the body. I wish I had been able to give him some of my candy...
Share with friends & family!
It's hard working in customer service, especially with irate customers. You need to be able to empathize and understand where your customers are coming from, show sympathy, and be willing to help them with their problem. However, if they come at you ranting and raving about an issue which clearly has nothing to do with you, well, then you're free to rant about them on the internet.