First, thank you to Where's My Angels for reminding me about this story. I will probably not get all the facts right, I have probably embellished a bit over the years but you will get the idea...and why Richard Simmons is so very important to me and my family.
Years ago Richard Simmons had a talk show called (amazingly enough) The Richard Simmons Show. Now, since I am such a spring chicken, I have no memories of that show. But I will tell you that the show is responsible for my brother.
I guess my father watched the show (which cracks me up because I have to assume that Richard hasn't changed all that much over the years). One day there was a guest who taught the audience how do the Heimlich maneuver...thank god.
Alex was about a year old when he swallowed an orange segment whole and started choking. I remember a little about it but, in all honesty, I was only 3 at the time so my memories are foggy and recreated by people telling the story. Obviously he couldn't breath. My parents say he was turning blue. My mother asked if she should call the ambulance and my father told her it would be too late...
And he performed the Heimlich maneuver like Richard taught him and he saved my brother's life.
To this day that story give me chills. To this day I get teary when I think about it.
Richard Simmons saved my brother's life. Call him kooky, call him a nut (and he is) but I tell you, that man is my hero.
Alex married the woman of his dreams this weekend. Due to circumstances beyond anyone's control we were not able to make it. The pictures were enough to bring me to massive tears. Without Richard, I would not have been able to see this:
Alex waiting for his lady.
Alex with Dad and Mom.
Andrea and her family.
Thank you, Alex, for making Andrea my official sister. And thank you, Andrea, for making my brother so happy. We are so happy for you both.
And thank you, Richard Simmons, for allowing us to see this day.
No, it isn't numbered, but this is my Thankful Thirteen for the day. There are way more then 13 things that make me thankful in these few pictures...
**Edited to add: I realize the more I read this that I fail to give my father credit for the role he played in saving Alex's life. Of course, my father is an amazing man (and even more my hero than Richard Simmons).**