Joseph Stone, a 36-year-old paramedic, was killed over the weekend in a landmine blast while doing government work in the Ukraine. He was there as part of a mission on behalf of the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE), a worldwide security-oriented group.
The Special Monitoring Mission is an unarmed civilian mission tasked with working to help normalize and stabilize the situation in eastern Ukraine.
They’d drive around and look to see who is violating the Minsk Agreement and got their share of harassment.
“That was their mission to drive around and report the facts,” [brother] Matthew Stone said.
“If somebody got injured, it was his job to treat them.”
“He liked going to those places where he could make a difference,” Matthew Stone said. “He liked going where people needed him. He couldn’t not try to help somebody. That’s just who he was.”
Joseph had also spent time in Afghanistan, Liberia, and Iraq before being assigned to the Ukraine.
He was clearly selfless, and he did it without thinking he’d be rewarded in the afterlife for his sacrifice. His brother made sure to point out that Joseph was a proud atheist.
Matthew describes his brother as a “secular activist” and a “humanist” and had a great passion for thinkers in the secularist and atheist traditions.
He was a “voracious reader” of Christopher Hitchens, Richard Dawkins, Sam Harris, Lawrence Krauss, and Maajid [Nawaz].
“The world,” Matthew said of his brother, “is a lot worse off without him.”
That last line is so true. How much better off would the world be with more people risking their own lives to help others?
(Thanks to Grant for the link)