For those of you who know me well, you’ll know that I’m an emotional person… I think that’s one reason why I’m good at what I do. But anyway, I’m editing away today while watching the live coverage of the funeral for Officer Simmons… the first L.A. SWAT officer to die in the line of duty in the history of the dept. Read HERE for more details… it is really sad. I think the funeral procession started a couple hours ago with streets lined w/police officers from ALL OVER THE WORLD saluting. Pretty amazing. Then the bagpipes started playing as the coffin was brought in and I almost lost it.

Anyway, so then I had to run to the bank and was listening to KNX (it’s either techno or 80’s in the car on Sirius or KNX cuz I love to listen to news. I know. Weird.) And there is a “Character Counts” commentary everyday. As a former teacher, this really touched my heart and also is such a great message:

Todd was a sadly quiet 11-year-old struggling to adjust to the death of his mother. His father had left long ago, and Todd was living with an aunt who made it known she resented the responsibility.

On several occasions, his teacher Sheryl heard his aunt tell him, “If it weren’t for my generosity, you’d be a homeless orphan.”

Sheryl took extra pains to make Todd feel valued in class and encouraged his interest in making things. Just before Christmas break, Todd shyly presented her with a small decorated box he’d made.

“It’s beautiful!” Sheryl gushed.

Todd replied, “There’s something special inside that my mom gave me before she died. She said it’s the one thing I can give and still have plenty left over. It helps you feel better when you’re sad and safe when you’re scared.”

As Sheryl started to open the box, Todd warned her, “Oh, you can’t see it.”

“Well, what is it?” Sheryl asked kindly.

“It’s love. You’re the first person since my mom that I love.”

Sheryl hugged Todd tightly and said, “I’ll treasure this forever. It’s the best gift I ever got.”

She kept it on her desk until she retired and touched it whenever she was sad or scared. It never failed to make her heart smile.

Years later, Todd sent her the tassel he wore during his graduation from medical school. It’s been in the box ever since.

In truth, love not diamonds is the gift that keeps on giving. What’s more, love generates itself. The more you give away, the more you have left.

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