Anthony Omari: The Kenyan Who Sacrificed His Face To Save The Lives Of 37 Orphans

What would you do when a bandwagon of machete-armed men broke into the orphanage home you are working at and you got to save 37 orphan boys and girls?

Well, in 2012, a 24-year-old Kenyan, Anthony Omari, who worked at the Faraja Children’s Home, a Kenyan orphanage, confronted three machete-armed intruders who broke into his orphanage.

The Faraja Children’s Home, a home for abandoned and orphaned kids in Kenya, is run by Omari’s mom, which makes Omari the eventual custodian of the Home.

Omari lives at the Faraja Children’s Home, where he ensures that the children’s safety is guaranteed. His other roles are ensuring the children get their meals, go to school, and their health is assured.

On January 23 2012, in the slum community of Ngong, the Faraja Children’s Home was attacked for the fourth time by three armed machete men. They broke into Omari’s room.

Omari, who had two options; run or stay and defend himself and the kids, chose the latter.

Upon noticing the armed machete men, he screamed. The three armed machete men became confused, he then threw a hammer at one of the guys’ faces, which forced the machete men to run away.

After a brave night and ensuring the safety of the kids, the persevering machete men came back to the orphanage home the next night for revenge.

The three armed machete men broke into the children’s home, and then broke into Omari’s room, an avenging move for what he did to one of the guys the other night.

Omari woke up to the noise of the break-in. He reached out for his hammer under his bed. Noticing this, one of the guys threw a machete at Omari, which he (Omari) managed to escaped.

Omari stood up with his hammer, hollering and roaring at the three machete men, so the kids could hear him and be aware that there was a break-in.

His hollering and swinging of the hammer forced the three machete men to retreat and go outside his room, forced them down to the compound of the children’s home, and finally forced them out into the compound.

As he had successfully chased the three men out of the compound, Omari heard the children screaming and crying in panic. He ran back into the compound to assure the kids they are safe and he is, too.

Unfortunately, as Omari turned his back around, he saw a machete thrown at his face, had his face split, blood intensely flowing down his face and cheeks.

He didn’t fall, he stood up like the main character in a Hollywood blockbuster trying to save the world. Omari continued his quest to force the three machete men away from the children’s home.

The split-face Omari, with blood covering his eyes and face, holding his hammer like Thor, successfully pushed back the machete men and drove them away.

As his vision became blurry, he held the front door, locked it, and finally went down to the ground. The kids rushed towards him and screamed, and his mother and the neighbours came out only to see a collapsed Omari with blood all over his face.

The cut was so deep that Omari collapsed. Omari was taken to the hospital later and his face was stitched 11 times, leaving it with a scar that runs from his forehead to his upper lips.

Omari survived the attack, but his story inspired the Reddit community when a 21-year-old Pennsylvania State student who was working as an intern in Kenya posted the story on his Reddit account, asking for $2,000 donations for Omari and the Faraja Children’s Home.

The story went viral on Reddit, Ben received $65,000 in the first 24 hours. The money went up and totalled up to $83,000, forty times more than the amount requested.

Anthony Omari’s bravery and selflessness saved those 37 kids. He could have easily run for his life, but he said “No, not today, not tomorrow, and not when I am here alive”. His bravery saved and changed the lives of the 37 kids at the Faraja Children’s Home.

As the saying goes, “Not all heroes wear capes”. Well, for Omari, I would say “Not all heroes are movie stars in Marvel movies”. Be like Omari, be selfless!

Author: Abu Bakarr Jalloh

Abu Bakarr Jalloh is a Sierra Leonean content writer, author, Neo Pan-African and founder of The African Dream, an online platform for inspiring, positive and compelling African stories. Contact: abubakarrjalloh@theafricandreamsl.com WhatsApp: +23276211583

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