Republican presidential candidate and retired neurosurgeon Ben Carson on Wednesday delivered a powerful message on Fox News after one of his campaign staffers died in a car crash the day before.
He was asked by Gretchen Carlson, the host of “The Real Story,” if there was anything to be taken away from 25-year-old Braden Joplin’s tragic death.
“Well, the lesson to me, and particularly to the younger people is, please don’t copy my generation and become hardened and cynical and hateful with people you disagree [with],” Carson said.
“We’re all in the same boat.” he added, “It doesn’t mean we have to be enemies because we disagree about something.”
He also said he was lucky to have met with and known Joplin, who took a semester off from Texas Tech to save money and work on Carson’s campaign.
“This young man was just amazing,” Carson said. “He was so incredibly compassionate. He cared about how other people felt. … If everyone acted like him, we would have a lot fewer problems in our country.”
Joplin, an Iowa volunteer, was involved in a crash with three other volunteers when the van they were driving hit a patch of black ice, flipped on its side, and was hit by an oncoming vehicle. The other passengers did not suffer serious injuries.
Carson’s campaign events remained suspended Wednesday after he initially paused them shortly after news broke of the accident. He said he paid for Joplin’s family to fly to Omaha, Nebraska, which was where the staffer was taken to an area hospital after the crash.
“A presidential candidate asks a lot of his or her volunteers, working long hours in the cold, under-appreciated,” Carson said in a release Tuesday. “They are the unsung heroes of the political process. The outpouring of support for Braden and his family from fellow candidates, as well as their staffs and volunteers, demonstrates that life will always transcend politics, and I thank them for their kind words. Please continue to keep Braden’s family and friends in your prayers as they struggle through this difficult time.”
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