Two stories, both with happy endings, have helped provide a hopeful launch to 2023 in Alexandria. Both are testaments to the power of determination, care and, above all, love.
On page 1 of this week’s issue of the Alexandria Times, “Missing city resident found” recounts the remarkable story of Kilee “Kyle” Kamali, who had been missing since mid-December. His mother, Julie Oliveri, discovered that Kamali had disappeared on Dec. 15 and subsequently launched an all-out effort to find her son. Working with the police, utilizing social media and, finally, hiring a private investigator, Oliveri doggedly continued searching for her son, who lives with bipolar disorder, even as day after day ominously passed with no word about Kamali’s whereabouts.
Miraculously, Kamali was found on the penultimate day of 2022, when a Good Samaritan who works with the homeless spotted Kamali on the street in D.C., realized he needed medical help and called an ambulance, which took him to a D.C. hospital. Shortly thereafter, Oliveri received a call from the hospital saying they had her son, though he was on a ventilator due to a serious respiratory infection.
Oliveri rushed to her son’s side, and it looks as if he will be OK. Kamali is now off the ventilator, talking – albeit quietly – and readying to leave the hospital soon.
The other story, in the Dec. 22 issue of the Times – our last paper of the year with current news prior to our year-in-review issue – was about a pair of senior sister dogs, Sophie and Joey, who had spent their whole lives together and needed a new home.
Love for these dogs abounded, beginning with their former elderly owner who could no longer care for them but turned them into the Animal Welfare League of Alexandria rather than have them euthanized. The owner requested that they not be separated, as they knew the dogs would be miserable without each other.
The AWLA did their best to publicize the plight of these dogs in hopes a new owner would come forward. Realtor Diann Hicks, an animal lover, featured the dogs in her Pet-of-the-Week ad that runs in the Times, and we ran a front page story entitled “AWLA seeks home for senior dog pair” on Dec. 22.
AWLA reports that they subsequently received numerous inquiries about the canine sisters and that Joey and Sophie are now happily settling into their new forever home – together.
In both of these instances it took many people – a network or a village – all sharing concern, compassion, and, yes, love to bring about happy endings. These stories are testament to the power of love, and we choose to view them as a portent of good, not bad, things to come in 2023.