Contributed by Josh Fryfogle
No, not Alex Cross the fictional character from James Patterson novels. That’s just a coincidence. A different Alex Cross, who is 8 years old.
And our own young Alex does not like those book titles with his name in them.
“I don’t know why they do that,” he says.
I told him that was just a coincidence. He said he knows.
Josh Fryfogle: What do you think of Special Santa?
Alex Cross: Pretty awesome.
JF: How so?
AC: Well, helping people who don’t really have the money, to get their children gifts… that’s something good to help with.
And - It helps many-a families, so… its – it’s just a good place to be.
And help out.
JF: What do you think of Mari Jo [Parks]?
Mari Jo was clear that she didn’t want a story about her, so, back to Alex.
JF: So, how long have you been helping?
AC: Ah- About my whole life. They’ve known me since I’ve been a newborn, so…
JF: I think sometimes that helping people is the most important thing we can do.
AC: Yeah, me too.
After this, I heard Alex’s mother call him. He went to her, but careful to excuse himself from our conversation. I followed behind him, to ask his mother if she would mind letting me quote him in the next edition of the paper.
Mandy Cross told me that it was her family that was featured in the June 2014 edition of The People’s Paper. Their home burned – they lost six dogs.
There was that moment of knowing. Mandy thanked me several times. I just don’t know how to respond to that situation. I am in awe of how these things coincide. Here’s this kind-hearted kid, giving me a message of hope and help, and it turns out his family was helped because a local community member – K.T. McKee - decided to write about their family tragedy. There is no better use for these pages.
I wandered about, taking photos while a wave of families came in to receive help. Several rooms, for different purposes. Alex came looking for me.
AC: I didn’t know you were the man with the newspaper.
JF: Yeah, I guess I am.
AC: Thank you very much.
No, Alex, thank you very much. Thanks for helping pretty much your whole life. Thanks for your spirit. Thanks for talking with me.
People who have lost so much, they are the ones helping out.
“Reprinted from the December 2015 edition of Make A Scene Magazine”