When 10-year-old Peter Asumani's father slipped and fell on a wet floor in their Lincoln, Nebraska, home, he took care of him as best he could, giving him liquids and trying to keep him comfortable. For 10 days this went on, while the boy cared for him. All alone.
It wasn't until his school alerted authorities to the boy's absence that anyone knew what was going on. When an investigator arrived at the home, they found 45-year-old Bienvenu Asumani alive but unresponsive. He was taken the hospital Sunday where he later died.
It's heart wrenching to think of how much better this could have all ended if only the boy called 911, or asked a neighbor for help, or anything. But authorities don't believe he did. So of course, there's the big question -- why didn't he?
I'm from Lincoln, Nebraska, and people there are nicer than any I've ever met. If only he'd stepped outside his door and asked, someone would have helped. I'm sure in most communities, anyone would have. But we don't know why he didn't. Maybe there was a language barrier; maybe he was scared; maybe he didn't know how to call 911. I don't know, and it feels like there are pieces of this story missing. I try to think of my 9-year-old son being in a similar situation, and I can't fathom it.
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But the thought of this boy trying to care for his father all alone breaks my heart no matter why it happened. And thank goodness the school called, because the thought of him dying there alone with his son would just be unbearable.
According to the Associated Press, the boy has been put into state custody. An affidavit states that the boy told authorities he has relatives in Arizona and that his mother is in Africa. So there he is all alone.
Hopefully more facts will be forthcoming that shed light on how something like this could happen. While it certainly won't change things, it could potentially help prevent them from happening again.
Why do you think this boy wouldn't call for help?
Image via l'interdit/Flickr
Going to baseball games
Riding bike rides in the nice weather
Playing outside after work/school
Going for walks outside