Yesterday evening at dusk (about 8:30 p.m.), as I was walking out of the Port Huron Meijer’s store with my daughter, Kayla, a most unusual thing occurred. We were proceeding through the parking lot toward my car with a couple bags of groceries when we suddenly heard a woman’s scream. It was just one scream, but filled with angst and tears, I could tell. And it was slightly muffled, as if someone were trying to stifle it. My daughter and I glanced at each other then looked around as we approached my vehicle, trying to discern from which direction it had come. We saw nothing. We heard nothing. As we got into my car, I suddenly had the oddest feeling strike me. As a result, I decided at that moment not to leave directly, but to quickly drive up and down a few rows of cars just to take a peek.
As I neared the end of the row we had been parked in, I suddenly saw it – a man struggling with a woman, attempting to get her into a mini-van. She had her feet firmly planted on the asphalt pavement and her arms spread wide, holding on for dear life to each side of the sliding door while he was trying to dislodge her grip and shove her inside, covering her mouth with one hand. She was terrified. He was pissed.
Shocked and furious, barely thinking - I stopped my car abruptly and shouted to my daughter, “lay on the car horn, and don’t let up”. I got out and ran toward the man, screaming, “Hey mother fucker, let her go!”, then BOOM! - slammed a wicked front kick right into his face as he turned his head my direction, having been startled by both my screaming approach as well as my car horn blaring.
Well, thank God it was enough!
Enough to draw the attention of other passersby, who decently stopped to see what the ruckus was all about and help out. Enough of a distraction for the poor lady to break free from her struggle. Enough to have put an abrupt end to what was about to become a very violent crime that would likely have changed the life of the victim forever. Enough.
Of course, some of the men in the parking lot subdued the would-be attacker until the police arrived. I believe they even landed a few of their own blows at his face and gut in the process. Good for them. And I did my very best to hug and comfort the poor woman, who was absolutely terrified afterwards.
Ladies, do yourselves a favor. Stay alert. Be prepared. Always. Take a self defense class. Keep in shape. Don’t shop alone. Carry pepper spray or mace...something. Be proactive in not becoming the victim in today’s backwards society. There are bad people in the world. I live in a very GOOD area, and this still happened. I am NOT a big person (5’7”, 118 lbs.) and under certain circumstances I may not have been effective in helping this woman – but I am a martial artist. And for the first time in my life, I was very thankful for the past three years of time and grueling dedication that I’ve put into training, as it allowed me to react instinctively in a dangerous situation without fear. (Although, I was pretty shaken up afterwards, when the adrenaline rush wore off).
But...it proved useful to aid in helping another. It was worth it.
The choices we make today affect the quality of life we have tomorrow. Choose wisely.