tragic helicopter accident yesterday took the lives of two WBTV employees.

A pilot and meteorologist with the WBTV news station in Charlotte died in a helicopter crash around noon Tuesday in Charlotte, off Interstate 77 South. Just after 3 p.m., WBTV confirmed that the victims were meteorologist Jason Myers and Sky3 pilot Chip Tayag.

In a piece at Persuasion, Michael Ignatieff writes:

Consolation has also lost its institutional setting. The churches, synagogues, and mosques, where we once consoled each other in collective rituals of grief and mourning, have been emptying out. If we seek help in times of misery, we seek it alone, from each other, and from therapeutic professionals. They treat our suffering as an illness from which we need to recover.

Yet when suffering becomes understood as an illness with a cure, something is lost. The old traditions of consolation were able to situate individual suffering within a wider frame and to offer a grieving person an account of where an individual life fit into a divine or cosmic plan. Such frames remain available to us even now: the Jewish God who demands obedience but whose covenant with his people promises that he will protect us; the Christian God who so loved the world that he sacrificed his own son and offered us the hope of eternal life; classical Roman Stoics who promised that life would hurt less if we could learn how to renounce the vanity of human wishes.

A prayer for our WBTV colleagues:

Lord, please grant peace, comfort, and support to the families, friends, and colleagues of James and Chip. May they be surrounded by love and kindness in their time of grief and pain. May their memories be celebrated and bring solace. We know this will be a very difficult time… losses are felt more acutely during this time of year… as they are for so many people. We pray for your people – our brothers and sisters – for strength and consolation… and assurance that they are loved.

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