Today, I talked with 87 different people who wanted to go to America.Â To some of them, I had to say: “no,” and to some, I could say: “yes.”Â This story from NPR, about a visa interview 25 years ago, and where the applicant ended up, is a reminder that my decisions can have a huge impact on people’s lives.
Christopher Francis prayed in earnest before arriving at the U.S. Embassy in Colombo, Sri Lanka, in 1973.
It was 2 o’clock in the afternoon and the course of his life depended on this moment. He needed to make a case to a man named David C. Harr about why he deserved a visa to the United States.
About a half-hour later, with his visa stamped and signed, Francis and Harr shook hands. Harr wished him the best. It was July 20, 1973.
A month later Francis traveled to the U.S. to train as a nurse. As years passed, he climbed the ladder to become director of inpatient and outpatient services of his hospital department. Today, he’s a U.S. citizen with a wife and two daughters.
The rest of the story is amazing. It’s worth a read: