As I read more about the brave young Australian woman who was among the survivors of the November 13 attacks in Paris, I was moved by this passage:

Friend Kate Rees, 22, said she received an emotional three-minute phone call following the shooting where Emma begged her to call her mother back in Australia.

“All she said was she was lucky she wasn’t inside. She just kept saying to me she was next door in the line and she just needed to talk to her mum,” Ms Rees said.

Ms Rees said she would be at her friend’s side as soon as authorities would allow access to the hospital.

“She’s not alone. I’ve talked to her twice on the phone and her injuries aren’t serious but it’s causing her a lot of discomfort,” she said.

Emma’s mother was in shock when she heard the news but was relieved to know her daughter was alive and out of danger, Ms Rees said.

I burst into tears when I read about Ms. Parkinson needing to talk to and receive a hug from her mother after surviving the savagery in Paris. I immediately thought of those who died on 9/11, those who would never have a chance to hug their mothers, or their children, ever again because of the murderous machinations of fundamentalist fanatics. I flashed back to a story that broke my heart after 9/11–the story of Bruce Reynolds, an African-American New York Port Authority officer who died trying to rescue people trapped in Two World Trade Center. Reynolds was married to a young Irish immigrant and had two children under the age of five; because of the unrestrained evil of Osama bin Laden and company, he would never have another chance to hold his son and daughter, to tell him he loved them, to watch them grow and date and marry and have children of their own.

I hope Lisa Parkinson, Emma’s mother, realizes just how lucky she is to be able to hold her daugher, to give her that hug she so desperately needed. I hope she realizes that she brought a courageous young lady into the world, someone who will bring love and compassion to a planet that needs as much of it as possible. I hope she realizes that when she looks into her child’s face, she sees a young woman who represents hope and life in a time of hate and death.

(NEXT: The violence that rocked Emma Parkinson’s native country.)

D.R. Tucker

D. R. Tucker is a Massachusetts-based journalist who has served as the weekend contributor for the Washington Monthly since May 2014. He has also written for the Huffington Post, the Washington Spectator, the Metrowest Daily News, investigative journalist Brad Friedman's Brad Blog and environmental journalist Peter Sinclair's Climate Crocks.