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There was a tragedy at my workplace, Washington University, today. A seven month old baby was left in a parked car on an exposed parking lot on a near 100° F day. The baby died. …

Apparently each of the child's parents, both of whom work at the university, believed that the other had taken the baby to chid-care. Passers-by noticed the baby at midday – by then the child had been in the car for about 3 hours and was beyond saving. The incident cast a pall of gloom over everyone; a terrible, terrible error of judgement by the parents.

A strange coincidence followed. I went to Art Mart, a local art supply store, this evening to pick up some double-stick photo-safe tape. I mentioned the sad story to the checkout girl, and she told me that it was her boyfriend's mother who was the passer-by who saw the baby, smashed in the car window with a rock, and tried to revive the child. She will be having nightmares tonight, I suspect, but none to compare with those of the parents.

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