Bad stuff happens to good people

By Dwight Collins | May 21, 2014

Camden — I felt like a heavy-weight boxer absorbing a combination of a right-cross and a left jab, when I woke Thursday morning to hear that not one, but two, families I care deeply about had lost their homes to fire.

I have known both Greg and Trina Rollins and True and Jannika Bragg for longer than any of them would probably like to admit and they are truly four of the best people I have ever met - that is why I am not surprised about how the communities have rally around them.

The Rollins and the Braggs had several connections prior to the night that changed their lives forever, but the arena in which I know them best is our Midcoast Wrestling family. Countless hours spent by them helping build a high school program that has dominated for almost three decades, Greg and both his sons - Levi and Jake - wrestled in high school. Levi won multiple state titles as a wrestler and coach.

I got to know the younger Rollins boys and True Bragg through wrestling while they were in middle school and True is currently a very respected assistant head coach for Camden Hills Wrestling.

I believe what goes around comes around and it is reaffirmed everyday that I made the right choice moving back to home. Neighbor helping neighbor still happens in our little corner of the world: within hours friends, neighbors and total strangers came to the need of people in their community and it its inspiring to me.

A testament to the character of Greg and Levi – just hours after fighting one of the toughest battles of their lives – they responded with Rockport Fire Department to help others at a crash in Rockport.

I have watched True grow from a middle school kid to a outstanding young man, husband and father who really gets it when it comes to the idea of paying forward. I have dealt with a lot of coaches that my sons have had over the years and he is, by far, one of the best.

These families will bounce back better than before, largely because it is not in their make-up to just give up. Hard workers for everything they had, I have no doubt they will work just as hard for anything they gain in the future.

Secondly, they live in our towns – period. I have lived a lot of other places and I have never seen the kind of esprit de corps and rallying behind one another then in the five towns – we are all blessed.

I'm so very thankful that everyone got out safe and that little Liam Bragg has a papa with hands like a tight end, but I am truly sorry they lost their dog in the blaze.

Whether they realize it or not, these two families have touched many in our community with their constant effort to help others and if anything can shine a little ray of hope on a devastating situation like this, it is the overwhelming support during trying times.

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