Monday, December 8, 2008

Revisit: 'Attack and Muder at the Drum Tower' [Updated]

Back in August, I wrote a blog entry about the attack that occurred in the second level of the Beijing drum tower.

I received a comment on that story that I deeply hope is true, but ... partly because it was anonymous (see update), and mostly because there have been no further news reports that I've been able to find, I have no way of being sure. Here is a copy of that comment:

"I am a Canadian who was in Beijing and had worked with the guide who was injured in the attack. I am happy to report that she is OK, and getting married very soon. While she underwent surgery shortly thereafter, she has recovered well from her wounds. Her brother is a doctor, and I can attest to the fact that she received excellent care, as I visited her in the hospital on two occasions. While I know she still experiences physical pain, this young Chinese girl has an indomitable spirit, and I am certain she will make a full psychological recovery. I too was frustrated that for 2 days while in Beijing I could find no information on her status. I feared she may have died, and hardly a day goes by that I don't think of the courage of my Chinese friend. Her name was Olivia."
By this, I understand that her chosen "English" name is Olivia and that she is fine. I do so hope this to be true. It bothers me still that there has been zero coverage of her story.

In any case, I thought this was significant enough to post.

Update: The comment came from Heath Sterling, who contacted me separately through another site. Now that the comment is no longer "Anonymous" to that level ... I have a much higher confidence that it's true. :-)


  1. Hi Gary, I'm sort of new to blogging, and I even had trouble adding your info. The reason I didn't reveal more information was... as you initially alluded to, I'm not sure how comfortable Olivia is about the whole thing. She's not exactly the type to steal the limelight... ;-)
    What I do pledge to do, is contact her, and ask her to post on your blog, or get permission to share more information about her story. I heard an eyewitness account from her, from her hospital bedside, that I can't think of without tears welling in my eyes. Peace. PS - I'm taking a creative writing course, and I'm writing a story based on Olivia's experience, I just can't shake it...

  2. Hello Gary, I am the person who was attacked at the Drum Tower. My friend Heath helped me a lot. I really appreciate his help. I feel much better now and am already going back to work. I still have a little pain in my bones, but, as time goes by, this is getting better and better. I feel sorry for the family, If I knew chinese Kung Fu, I could have protected them. I hope his wife, daughter and the rest of his family are ok and recovering well.

  3. Hi Gary,

    I can confirm what Heath said. Olivia actually pointed your blog out to me.

    I can't tell you anything more then is already said because I feel that Olivia's story is hers to tell, not mine.

    Like her, I feel sad about what happened and I hope the family of Todd Bachman are doing ok and I would like to extend my sincerest condolences.

  4. Thank you all for posting.

    Joost: Thank you for your input.

    Heath: Thank you for reaching out to me.

    Olivia: Thank you for letting me (and all 10 other readers of my blog) that you are O.K. enough to work again.

  5. That is so cool, Gary. I don't have a blogger story anywhere near as cool as that. One more example of how the internet has made the world even smaller. Heath, I'd love to see your story when it is finsihed (take your time). Best wishes for Olivia and her friends.

  6. Hi Olivia, so moved to see you talking here. Wish you have a peaceful life, without that piece of pain to bother.(BTW, what a coincidence! I happened to have chosen the male version of your English name :p )
    My respect to you, Heath and Gary, for letting this whole thing to happen and caring this so much.
    It seems pretty like an achievement you've done.