Some years ago, two teenagers with a long history of crime and delinquency robbed a YMCA on the lowest east side of New York City. On the way out they saw a young man at the telephone switchboard. They were frightened and assumed that the must be calling the police. They seized and beat him savagely with brass knuckles and a black jack. Thinking that he was dead, they hid him behind a radiator near the swimming pool and escaped.
Later that evening, a woman who came to swim, was walking by the pool. She slipped in the man's blood, screamed, and then found Donald Tippet's body. He lived, but one eye was so badly damaged that it could not be saved.
Meanwhile, the two teenagers were apprehended and brought to trial. Their past records assured that both would get long sentences. However, Donald Tippet did an amazing thing-he requested that the judge allow the two young men to be paroled to his charge. He wanted to give them another chance. He believed they could change.
One of the boys blew his opportunity. He committed another crime, was caught, and to jail. The other boy, however, was responsive to Tippet's kindness. He went to college and then, eventually, to medical school. He became one of our nation's leading surgeons, an eye surgeon.
A reporter, writing about Donald Tippet's amazing story of forgiveness, said of the surgeon's accomplishments: "I wonder if he ever performs one of those delicate eye operations without thinking of that night in the YMCA and the young man whose confidence and forgiveness changed his life!"