From Donald Zimmer, an ER doctor in South Bend, which is right across the river from Mayor Pete’s house.
The first time I met Mayor Pete I was working in the ER, very shortly after finishing my residency and moving back to South Bend. I was caring for a little Somali boy who had nearly to hanged himself. We had no Arabic translator immediately available that could help me talk with his mother, and we were working on getting one of the phone translation services when a young man in a suit showed up and just started translating. I assumed the hospital had found and sent down an official translator because translators at the hospital where I did my residency training always wore suits. The boy was gravely ill, and I did not bother to ask who the new translator was, but he spent about an hour with the mother and I, just helping me talk with her about his treatment and his prognosis. Then he followed her and her son up to the ICU when the boy was admitted. During the whole event he never mentioned who he was or said anything to take the focus away from caring for this little boy and his family.
About an hour later he came down from the ICU and shook my hand before he left. I asked him how long he had been a translator with the hospital, and he very casually replied, “I don’t work for the hospital, I’m Mayor Pete.” He shook my hand and left without another word He had come and done what he needed to do and was on his way either home or back to work.
I learned later that he had simply heard over the police scanner that we needed an Arabic translator at the hospital for this tragic situation and just wanted to help. In addition to studying at Harvard, being a Rhodes scholar, working as a McKenzie consultant, he speaks fluent Arabic and worked for Navy intelligence in the Middle East. He is a pretty amazing guy, has done incredible work here in South Bend, and will do great things for the country I hope.”
From Peggy Bekeny from Trinity Church on the Green on Facebook.
I must confess, I’ve read this story about Pete Buttigieg before, and do not remember if I posted it last year. A critical limitation of Facebook, is that it doesn’t let you categorize and search your posts, like my blog InconvenientNews.net at wordpress does.
I did a search here, on Pete Buttigieg, and found all my posts, but couldn’t tell if this story was stuck in one of them or not. At any rate, its an old story from last year, but a good one.