My father was in the hospital earlier this week having his pacemaker replaced (thankfully, all went well). When I spoke with him on the phone this evening to see how he was doing, he mentioned that when he was in the hospital, one of the chaplains stopped by to see him, largely because she recognized his last name. She asked if he was related to me, and he said "yes." She said that she had gone to graduate school with me and that I had also been her academic adviser (I had served in that capacity at the college). In any event, my father doesn't remember her name but this anonymous woman said she had fond memories of me, which is always nice to hear.
Earlier this week, I noticed an obituary in the paper for a man who worked at my local bank. He was only in his 50s and the obit said that he died suddenly. What I remember about him is that one day I had a banking problem and this gentleman was so kind and understanding and helped me out, and I found myself strangely sad at the news of his passing.
It's strange the way one life touches so many others - the people we went to school with, or worked with, or helped in the course of our daily work. We may never know or remember all the lives we have impacted in some way. Yet, every day we have the chance to help other people and to be kind. We have the opportunity to bring good to another's life.