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Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Heroes of Norway's Massacre

Hege Dalen and Toril Hansen.

Marcel Gleffe

Some people are natural born heroes but don't realize it until something terrible happens. They call it 'fight or flight'. Most of us don't know how we would react if our lives are threatened and hope we never get to find out. On 22nd July when the madman in Norway went on a shooting spree, some brave people stepped forward.

Marcel Gleffe, a 32 year old German roofer was camping with his parents directly across from Utoya Island when he heard shooting and people shouting for help. He jumped in his boat and risked his life several times by returning to the scene of the massacre and picked up terrified teenagers from the water and took them back to the safety of the mainland.

There were other heroes there on that terrible day, including two married lesbian women, Hege Dalen and Toril Hansen. They were eating at their campsite when they heard the shooting and people screaming. But instead of running away and hiding, they immediately jumped in their boat and rushed to the scene, pulling people on board, all the while under fire from the gunman, whose bullets shot through their vessel. After four trips, they saved forty people.

There were others with boats who helped out but didn’t get any recognition at all but they have the satisfaction of knowing who they are and that what they did on that terrible day was courageous and wonderful. Bravehearts every one.