Big Paul, signing off in Haiti (for now) – 09/13/2010

Posted: September 13, 2010 in Uncategorized

Good morning everyone.

It is with a very sad yet full heart that I sit down to do my final blog entry from Haiti and close out this chapter of my life.  I so dearly want to stay here and continue what we are doing but funds have run out so it is my time to leave.  LP will be staying here for a while longer while I go back to the states to try and raise the money we need to take MMRC to the next level.  Haiti will never be forgotten by us and there is so much to do here.  It is our goal to establish an EMS system and EMT training so that in the next 5 years Haiti will have a fully functional EMS system.  Our work here is nowhere near done and we have accomplished so much.  So many of you have given so much to our cause and I can’t thank you enough.  From kind words to monetary help all of you have a spot in my heart.  It is very hard for me to write this without becoming emotional as I feel that when I leave a great void will be left.  LP is very capable of continuing the work here, but never in my life have I given all I have to help a country and feel as if I have not done enough. 

I have learned so much here.  so much about who I am and what I am capable of.  I know that my calling in life is to help my fellow-man and carry the burden for those who can not.  Haiti has changed me forever and shown me that when someone is in need you do whatever it takes to help them.  I have lost myself here and in the work I am doing.  I have met some of the most amazing people here and they have all impacted my life.  My heart goes out to all of you. 

Enough with the sappy stuff….  Let’s remember the good times and talk about what has recently happened.

Mens Journal did a write up on us recently.  It hit newsstands yesterday and on page 56 you will find an article titled “Haiti’s Cowboy EMT’s”.  Kitt and his twin brother came out to do the article and they were awesome.  Guys, if you are reading this thank you for trusting us with your lives when you rode with us.  You boys are great and keep up the good work.

There are several other people that have deeply impacted my life that I want to take a moment and publicly thank.

LP – I have never had a brother before.  I’ve never had someone that I trusted with my life before.   Words can not begin to express how grateful I am for meeting LP and the brotherhood we have formed in Haiti.  Through thick and thin I know he has always had my back.  Together we have helped save the lives of so many people.  I know that without him this team would never have survived.  He is an incredible human being and underneath that thick skin of his is heart of gold.  Often we speak of what trouble we are going to get in to throughout the world and their is no one else I would team up with when we go to our next disaster area.  He has taught me so much about myself and I am so grateful to him for that. 

The Boys – Ralph, Junior, Forrest, Ely, Chicago, and Kentucky.  I pray that whoever reads this blog has a chance to meet these outstanding men.  They have been the backbone of our operation.  They are by the far the most committed group of guys I have had the honor to stand side by side with and do our work.  They have stood with us and helped their people in manner that would humble even the toughest person.  I have so much love in my heart for this group of guys and it pains me to know that I must leave them for a bit.  The Lord will bless them for what they have done here. 

Micaela – When I think of Micaela my heart is full.  She is one of the most amazing women I have ever met in my life.  We had the chance to work together for several months and I have always looked up to her.  She is a shining example of giving all you have until you have nothing left to give.  We’ve seen each other at our best and worst and she always pulls through.  She’s back in school now working on her NP…. so Micaela, hurry up and get that done so we can go help some more people.

Megan – By far one of the most dedicated doctors that I have been honored to serve.  She is a one woman army that is running an entire TB ward.  She is brilliant and so dedicated to her patients.  She is the true example of compassion and drive and she is just like us.  She is doing all of this work on her own dime, without sponsors and dealing with the same BS we deal with.  Megan, you have opened my eyes to what it takes to make things work.  You are an amazing doctor and your selflessness inspires me.  Thank you for letting me be of service to you and your patients.  Thank you for trusting me with your patients lives and letting me help those in need. 

Pigpen – Before I say anything about her I think we should have a meeting about it.  Just kidding girl.  Thank you for coming through and helping us so many times.  Without you we would have been homeless and Medishare would never have been an option.  Without you we wouldn’t have been able to accomplish as much as we have.  I am so proud of you and the work you have done here. You are an example of fierce dedication and commitment to serving your fellow man. 

Princess – I don’t even know where to start with you.  I am so glad I found you in the mountains and that you tagged along with me back to PAP.  It would never have been the same without you there.  We’ve been through it all together and even though you went to your happy place quite often, I knew I could always count on you.  I know you will do good in school and you will be an amazing nurse. 

Sully, Riann, Josh, and Nir……  You guys are the craziest bunch of bastards I have ever had the privilege of working with.  I am honored to say that I have worked side by side with some of the finest marines this country has every produced.  Thank you boys for always keeping it real and making this work so much fun.

Heather – You are my crazy Brooklyn Broad and you mean the world to me.  Thank you for always being there to talk some sense in to my thick skull.  Thank you for teaching me so much and always being there when needed.  You are a volunteer legend here.   The lives you have impacted here will be felt for generations to come.  Thank you for taking me in when I get to NY.  See you in a few hours.

Tuwanda – You are the voice of reason.  Your presence was always felt and when you left you were sorely missed.  Thank you for making us laugh and keeping a level head at all times. 

Diva – Need I say more.  You are a trooper for always putting up with my crap.  You are such a dedicated woman and I know the kids of Kola will be much better thanks to you and your efforts. 

Linda – Thank you for all you have done for me.  Your emails and letters have kept me strong.  Thank you for being the one I could vent to.  Thank you for doing everything you could do make sure that we had whatever we needed.  You are very dear to me and I am so proud to be your friend.

~~~~~~

Well everyone, that’s all I can bear to write at this point.  I want to close this blog by telling my parents how much I love them.  They have always been so supportive of my work here.  They have prayed for me daily and the fact that I can not go home right away to see them hurts.  I will see you guys soon.  I promise.

My final plea is for everyone to keep us in your hearts and minds.  The work we are doing has just begun. 

Peace.

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Comments
  1. Heather L says:

    Paul-
    You are an amazing person! It blows me away how much you have accomplished in Haiti. I am so proud to say I know you and I greatly enjoyed what little time I did get to work with you even though it was before MMRC. I wish so much that I could have come back with you 😦 I have kept track of your blog and it has filled my heart and kept me connected with the Haiti I miss so dearly. Bless you for all you have done. I hope that you and I can meet up sometime soon and catch up! This crazy mountain red shirt broad misses the hell out of ya!
    Love you!
    Heather Landt

  2. Andrew O'Kane says:

    thanks paul…we just need a few thousand more like you (and a few million bucks)…I hope your writing will inspire the world of the rich, safe and privileged to give more of what we have…this is far from over…

    “Haiti is not simply one more of those tropical dictatorships where to rule is to steal, and headless bodies are found by the road. Haiti contorts time: it convolutes reason if you are lucky – and obliterates it if you are not. Haiti is to the hemisphere what black holes are to outer space. Venture there and you cross an event horizon.
    – TD Allman
    see you back there soon!
    Andrew

  3. Micaela says:

    As I have always said, BP and LP get shit done. I have never known more selfless, dedicated people in my life. Read the Mens Journal article…BP and LP have done more for Haiti with a few thousand dollars than many others have done with millions.

    I love you guys! You are both incredible and I hope I can continue to work with you both in the future.

  4. Hi Paul,

    You don’t know me. I only came upon your blog by accident. When I read your post, though, I immediately understood your situation. I too run a non-profit that works with the poor, and like you, we too lost our funding. We will be able to operate only a little while longer on our reserves, and then I don’t know what will happen. At first, this seemed like a very bad development, but then, I realized it was making me reassess all of my thinking and helping me to reconceptualize the way I was working. I don’t know what the outcome will be for us. Maybe whatever I am learning now will aid my next project and not this one. I don’t know, and I don’t want to overgeneralize. For many, many people a loss of funds can be devastating, but just the same, despite all the sadness and frustration, sometimes a change of fortune can be just what we need, and I hope it will work out that way for you.

  5. Grant Rumford says:

    Paul, I am so proud of the work you guys have done. It was an honor to work alongside you during some crazy times. I would love to return someday and help get an EMS system rolling. The MOH ambulances are still operating but my dream is to take it to the next level. Keep in touch brother! Email me! Rumford6@gmail.com

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