DENVER -- In one day, a Denver man was the victim of theft and an unrelated, random act of violence that left him injured, but it’s how he is responding to the incidents that is gaining attention.
There's an easy way to describe Mark Tapy's Tuesday.
"It was a really bad day," Tapy said.
It began when Tapy walked to his vehicle behind his Highlands apartment Tuesday morning and found his work computer and supplies missing from his SUV.
"I was frustrated and it's obviously embarrassing going to work and telling them, 'Hey, your equipment has been stolen and here's why,'" Tapy said.
He was embarrassed because he knew he was partly to blame. Tapy quickly realized he left his door unlocked the night before.
Nobody could blame Tapy for what happened later that night, when he and his girlfriend got into his vehicle and ran into a trouble a few blocks later.
He was driving by an alley on Clay St. between 35th and 36th avenues, when his driver’s side window shattered.
"I wasn't sure if it was a bullet or not and that moment when I touched my head, I wasn't sure what I was going to find," Tapy said.
He found a large rock wedged between his shoulder and the door frame.
"There was glass all the way in the trunk," he said.
Tapy also found a pretty big gash by his ear.
"I got 17 stitches, on just the trauma on the head," he said.
Despite the physical injuries, Tapy said it was more difficult to hear a neighbor tell police that he’d seen two teenagers recently throwing rocks from the alley into the street.
"My goal is to work within my community, support my community, help develop my community," Tapy said. "It was just kind of disillusioning."
Disillusioning because mentoring teens is Tapy’s passion and his career, he works on programs in schools throughout Denver for Goodwill Industries.
"It was frustrating. My initial reaction was anger," Tapy said.
When Tapy shared the story of his day on Facebook it would have been easy to vent that anger. Instead of asking for sympathy, he asked for something else.
"I needed a reminder of what was good out there," he said.
Tapy asked friends to share something positive they've seen in the community and that's exactly what they did.
"It just blew up," Tapy said.
Two days later, friends have shared 70 inspiring and positive comments. Some shared simple stories of kindness between strangers, others shared examples of heroism. With each new post, Tapy says he’s glad he didn’t do the easy thing.
"What was so beautiful about it is it just overshadowed even what was a terrible day," Tapy said.AlertMe