Anthony Maggert knew all about Colin Powell.
He had read all his books – "Who has not?" He asks. He had seen him on television, startled by the calm that he seemed to show even in the most difficult times. When he joined the military himself, aged 23, and made three trips to Iraq and two more in Afghanistan, where he became infected with carnivorous bacteria that eventually led to the amputation of a leg, Powell had been to whom he had often thought , He was an ideal he could work towards. On Tuesday, as Maggert drove on the Capital Beltway toward Bethesda, MD, he saw a tall man bent over beside his car trying to fix a flat front tire, Maggert thought he recognized him: Powell [Powell] 19659005] But no, he thought, it could not be. Out here on the roadside?
He thought he was going to help the stranded driver one way or the other, pulling his car past him and coming toward a prosthesis based on the man. He saw that he was right.
"You're General Colin Powell," remembers Maggert, 42, when he said, "Yes, I am," Powell replied.
It was just a chance encounter. There were only a few minutes between strangers, each of whom had gone his own way a moment ago, but was now pushed together. A few miles away in Washington, the government collapsed. The experts on the television shouted. And everyone had something to say about the disagreeable encounter between an Indian veteran and boys in Make America Great Again hats on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial, an incident that had been interpreted in a partisan style. But out here everything seemed to be far away. The matter was, for once, easy. There was a flat tire that needed repair.
Maggert pulled out the wrench and Powell put away his tool. The two chatted while working on Afghanistan.
"Such a gentleman," said Maggert of former US Secretary of State, now 81, in which he saw this effortless calm again. "I hope when I'm [that age] I'm as fast as he is."
After the wheel was repaired, Powell went to a test at the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, and Maggert set off, but not before taking a quick selfie.
Throughout the day, Maggert thought about what had happened. He finally pulled out his cell phone and wrote him a message:
Powell, I hope I'll never forget it today because I'll never forget to read your books. "They have always been an inspiration, a leader and a statesman. After 33 years in the military, you were the giant on whose shoulders we stood to illuminate the torch, and now the generation of tomorrow must do the same.
Then Powell replied in a way:
"Thanks, Anthony," he wrote in a public Facebook post . "You touched my soul and reminded me of what this country is about and why it is so great. Let us stop yelling at each other. Let's just take care of each other. You have made my day. "