I stumbled upon a really interesting story on CNN.com this morning. In 1987, Gary Wright, owner of a small computer business, reached down to pick up a piece of lumber that was sitting in his company’s parking lot. The apparently innocuous piece of lumber, however, turned out to be a bomb planted by ‘Unabomber’ Ted Kaczynski as part of his crusade against technology. Exploding when Wright disturbed it, the bomb blast lodged more than 200 pieces of shrapnel in his body and blew him clear across the parking lot. He was the Unabomber’s eleventh victim in a 20-year campaign that killed three and wounded at least 20.
David Kaczynski, Ted’s brother who provided the tip the eventually led to the terrorist’s capture, has made a point of attempting to contact by phone and/or mail each of his brother’s victims to offer apologies. Most did not reply, and many of those who did replied with anger or, at best, neutrality. When David called Gary Wright, however, Wright immediately told him that it wasn’t his fault and he did not have to carry the burden of his brother’s actions. The two struck up a series of phone conversations, soon their families met in person, and over the years since they have become close friends who tour the country talking about reconciliation.
Proof of the power of forgiveness, and that you can find friendship in the most unexpected of places.