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When life gets hard, you don't have to do it alone. Just ask Lynn

An interaction made Lynn Fainsilber Katz feel like she could continue the life she wants to have.
Lynn Fainsilber Katz
An interaction made Lynn Fainsilber Katz feel like she could continue the life she wants to have.

This story is part of the My Unsung Hero series, from the Hidden Brain team, about people whose kindness left a lasting impression on someone else.


One day in 2022, Lynn Fainsilber Katz visited one of her favorite beaches, known for its crystal-clear water. She parked her car and headed for the shore with everything she needed for the day: a chair, a beach umbrella, flippers, goggles and a cooler. It was a difficult balancing act.

"It was just really hard to climb over all the rocks, and I was struggling," she said.

She reached a part of the beach entrance where there was a large step down. Unsure if she could take the step safely, she paused, wondering what to do.

"As I stood there, a young, kind-of 30-something-year-old man came over to me and said, 'Can I help you?' And I said, 'Sure!'" she recalled.

The man took some of the things she was carrying. Then he gave her his hand to walk her down the step. Fainsilber Katz felt grateful.

"As I age, I'm feeling a little bit more vulnerable and not as strong and able to do the things that I want to do," she said. "Having that kind of help and support at just that right moment felt like, 'I can continue in the life that I want to have.'"

The man's act of kindness comforted Fainsilber Katz and reminded her that when life gets hard, you don't have to do it alone.

"If you feel like there'll be somebody there who will help, then you can ... maintain the joy that you want to maintain in your life," she said. "So that's why I'm grateful to him ... because he helped me maintain that joy."

Editorial note: Lynn Fainsilber Katz is the mother of Hidden Brain producer Ryan Katz, who recorded this interview with her.

My Unsung Hero is also a podcast — new episodes are released every Tuesday. To share the story of your unsung hero with the Hidden Brain team, record a voice memo on your phone and send it to myunsunghero@hiddenbrain.org.

Copyright 2023 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Laura Kwerel
[Copyright 2024 NPR]
Ryan Katz

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