In 1989, an 8.2 (on Richter scale) earthquake almost flattened Armenia, killing over 30,000 people in less than four minutes.
In the midst of chaos, a father left his home and rushed to the school where he had left his son that morning, only to discover that the building had been totally destroyed.
The father remembered the promise he had made to his son : ‘no matter what, I will always be there for you!’ Tears began to fill his eyes as he looked at the pile of debris that once was his son’s school.
He began to concentrate on where he walked his son to class that morning. Remembering that his son’s classroom would be in a particular spot, he rushed there and started digging through the rubble.
Other parents who had gathered told him that he was wasting his time and energy, but the father would only say, “Are you going to help me?” and carry on digging.
The fire chief showed up and tried to pull him off the debris saying, “You are in danger. We will take care of it. You go home.” To which the Armenian father’s response was, “Are you going to help me find my son?”
The police came and urged the man to give up. But the distraught father courageously proceeded alone, because he needed to know for himself “is my boy alive or is he dead?”
He dug and pulled back boulder after boulder for thirty-eight hours non-stop and suddenly when he was pulling a boulder he heard his son’s voice.
“ARMOND, are you there?” He responded, “Dad, it is me, Dad! I told my friends that if my Dad is alive we would be saved! I told them you had promised me — no matter what, I will always be there for you! You did it, Dad!”
“What is going on there son?” the father asked. “We are fourteen of us, Dad. We are scared, hungry, thirsty, and thankful you are here. When the building collapsed, it made a wedge, like a triangle, and it saved fourteen of us!”
The son explained. “Come out my boy!” “No Dad! Let the other kids out first, cause I know you will get me! No matter what, /i know you’ll be there for me!”
The fireman, the police and the crowd could not believe what they saw!
The man whom they had considered as traumatized with anxiety and fear was actually responding to love and was pulling one boy after another until he pulled out and embraced the 14th boy, his son Armond!