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Finding Emilie

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In this segment, we take an emotional left turn to a story of a very different kind of lost and found. We begin with a college student, Alan Lundgard, who fell in love with a fellow art student, Emilie Gossiaux. Emilie's mom, Susan Gossiaux, describes her daughter, and the terrible phone call she recieved from Alan nine months after he became Emilie's boyfriend. Together, Susan and Alan tell Jad and Robert about the devastating fork in the road that left Emilie lost in a netherworld, and how Alan found her again.

 

 

Comments [369]

Lu from Suburb of New York City

I heard this when I was driving and sat in the driveway in the cold, transfixed. It was right before Easter, I remember. The next morning I sent the pastor of the church where I work the link to Finding Emilie. For me, it was a great story of a resurrection; it did more to help me understand what that word might mean than any theological treatise.
Alan and Emilie, you have a story of true love, of looking for someone until you find them without caring for the cost. Emilie's mom, I only hope that I can be such a lover of my three grown children as you are.
Thank you, radiolab, for giving us this gift.

Sep. 03 2014 05:55 PM
andy t from new york

oh my - I love all things RadioLab, and this is story is certainly one of the most profound, memorable, and moving of all of them - and that's saying a lot! So, I got this in my email today, as a sort of epilogue I guess. This is NOT spam - really! it really isn't!

http://donate.guidingeyes.org/site/PageNavigator/ConnectionsMay2014.html

May. 13 2014 10:38 PM
andy t from new york

oh my - I love all things RadioLab, and this is story is certainly one of the most profound, memorable, and moving of all of them - and that's saying a lot! So, I got this in my email today, as a sort of epilogue I guess. This is NOT spam - really! it really isn't!

http://donate.guidingeyes.org/site/PageNavigator/ConnectionsMay2014.html

May. 13 2014 10:27 PM
Cassidy from Evergreen, co

I heard this story in art class today and was heartbreaking yet... amazing. I can not wait to make blind art and see what it is like. This is a inspiring story and those in need I want to help. :)

Oct. 21 2013 08:04 PM
Omar.W from San Diego, CA

I heard this for the first time about 2 weeks ago and it really resonated with me. I don;t know why. I've never had this happen to me or anyone I know. I think it was just the love that Alan had for Emilie. Like there love and connection will powered her back. I hope someone does a doc on them like 10 years from now and they have little Alan's and Emilie's to show the world.

Apr. 18 2013 05:29 PM
Phil from G.R., MI

Incredible story! I only caught a small portion of this one, on my way to the grocery store. I didn't want to get out of the car, it was so moving, I knew I had to come to the website and find it later so I could hear the whole story. Thank you for sharing such an interesting and emotional story.

Apr. 13 2013 09:07 AM
Adgrrl1 from Detroit, MI

I am a long time listener of Radio Lab. I was listening to last week's podcast while at work and saw that "Finding Emilie" was one of the top podcasts. I hav enever been so moved by a story. I cried my eyes out and just thought what a miracle love, patience and compassion can be. Thanks you Jad and Robert for bringing such a beautiful and thought-provoking story to the public.

Apr. 12 2013 11:56 PM
Stephanie Richter from Lolo, Mt

My son fell asleep at the wheel 4 years ago and had many of the same injuries. He had a very traumatic brain injury which involved damage in his brain and his brain stem. He had a 10% chance of ever coming out of coma.... Praise God we didn't focus on that percent! He was in 5 hospitals and care centers in 6 months before coming home for good. He laughed for the first time 3 months later. Never was he alone; always always had the love and devotion of family and lots of prayer. He communicates through the use of a Dynovox eye gaze computer and blinks for yes and no. Am always asked by others how I can give constant, optimistic, loving care for so many years. My answer is how could I not? We were discounted for months by certain medical professionals; they believed that communication was not happening. It took a speech pathologist with an unbelievable passion to prove otherwise. Bless you all for your strength and perseverance! BELIEVE IN MIRACLES!!!!!

Apr. 11 2013 03:23 AM
old b(ald)b(earded)h(ippie) from omaha nebraska

being one that suffered a mis-diagnosed smh several years ago and since then having been watching/listening/reading everything i can find on man's study of the brain, including wnet's showing of THE HUMAN SPARK series with alan alda and the Commonwealth Club's Noon Forum with Oliver Sacks (book: Hallucination), today's (04/10/2013) program's replay of the 2011 radiolab program, i continue to be greatly hopeful there's still hope for a greater rejuvination of what i lost due to the sah. thanks so much for the hope.

Apr. 11 2013 12:24 AM
DAVID L. from AUSTIN, TX

Made this "tough" ER Nurse weep like a baby.

Apr. 10 2013 11:10 PM
Christi from Nebraska

This story captivated me--made my heart ache and swell with happiness all at once.

Apr. 10 2013 02:41 PM
Tui

This story made me cry every time, best love story ever. I told my husband and he was also touched by it.

Apr. 09 2013 09:06 AM
tundi from woodland hills

what a beautifully produced program! the narrators did such a wonderful job of editing their voices, allen's and susan's. i sat on the edge of my seat the whole time; not easy as i was in the car and as my destination was fast approaching i was anxious to hear the whole story before having to park and exit my car! susan's own clarity on the matter, to act so [seemingly] selfishly but be so surrendering to allen and his emotions when emilie's parents decide to move her to new orleans in an effort to 'release' allen from any responsibility or guilt. wow. and then, the strength, the despair. i was in tears [but just enough to not impair my driving!] thank you for a wonderful story. an update would be welcomed, as we all want to hear a hopeful continuous happy-ending.

Apr. 09 2013 02:01 AM
JD Michael from Ohio

This story overwhelmed me. Alan's use of the cellphone to record her responses added so much to understanding this breakthrough in her recovery. His efforts to establish communication with her is truly amazing.

Apr. 08 2013 06:45 AM

Great Story!!! I too am one of those people who was driving and wanted to hear the rest of the story so drove around the block a time or two to finish listening! Again, Great story! I love stories- true stories with a happy ending....Good luck to Emilie and her knight in shining armor who rescued her from her dark wall- Alan!

Apr. 07 2013 10:55 PM
Christina from SF Bay Area

For me, this story didn't reveal fault with the medical professionals who saved Emilie's life and treated her to the best of their knowledge, rather it reinforced the reality that we need to take ownership and be advocates for our own health and the health of loved ones. It took the love and persistence of Alan and Emilie's parents to bring her back. This is not necessarily something a healthcare worker who doesn't know Emilie could have done. A complete recovery team should include the efforts of friends and family.

Apr. 07 2013 05:56 PM
Paisley from NC

I heard this story for the first time today. I was so incredibly touched by Alan's dedication and determination in helping Emilie and staying by her side. What an astounding display of love and strength, on both their parts.

Apr. 07 2013 04:59 PM
Susan, Em's mom from New Orleans

I talked to both Emilie and Alan tonight. For some reason I sent both Em and Al the recent comments from the "Finding Emilie" section. Believe me, it touched Em and Al very strongly. Thank you. Obviously, I've known Em all of her life, yet she is an amazement to me constantly. How she faces everything and everyone with gracefulness and love just seems sometimes beyond human. The blind community has talked to me several times about how she inspires them. Many have asked for her to write a book so that others like themselves will learn from her example. I wish I could share so much more to let you know what they have learned from Em, but that is not for me to do but Emilie herself. To Jad and Robert and their team, thank you. To You who have emailed and talked to us via Em's website, "Thank you. You have helped with your love." Thornton Wilder was correct, "Love is the the bridge." And you have been a part of Em and Al's journey.

Apr. 07 2013 02:20 AM
El Reid from Glasgow, MT

This story has haunted me since I heard it months ago... The idea of being stuck in a wall unable to connect to the world, desperate for someone to pull you out, is both intimately visceral and resoundingly universal. A few bouts of sleep paralysis and some recent feelings of loneliness and displacement have really driven this idea home. A huge thanks to all involved for sharing this darkness and the eventual return to light!

Apr. 07 2013 12:02 AM
Floyd

I enjoyed the story but was left wondering about the remark by Emilie's mom about not liking what she saw in the way Emilie looked at Alan. It seemed like an intentional foreshadowing of something, but was never resolved.

Apr. 06 2013 09:22 PM
Julie

I loved this story. My heart goes out to Alan, Emilie, and Emilie's parents.

Apr. 06 2013 07:47 PM
JeannedArc from Boston

I was compelled to finish listening to this gripping story in my driveway because I became entirely transfixed. It began as subtly intriguing, and moved to tragic, then shocking - I dreaded to continue to what I thought would be the end. And yet... I could not abandon Alan and Emilie. What a powerful example of pure love.

Apr. 06 2013 05:52 PM
Nancy Hellen

An incredible story! Such determination by Alan and Emilie. This testimonial to love, perseverance and thinking outside the box should be required for all people studying in the medical field. I would hope it is shared at medical conferences around the world.

Apr. 06 2013 05:19 PM
Scott from San Diego

Wow.... very scary. I saw a anti war movie in the 70s called "Johnny Got His Gun" ( based on a novel of the same name) - it moved me and I will never forget it and this very real story is very similar and moved me even more.
What a great lesson for all of us that the "practice of medicine" is just that - a practice - not an exact science. While I understand the need for physicians to be dispassionate, it was Alan and Emilie's passion that saved her - Never under estimate the human factor.

Thank you for sharing this story

Apr. 06 2013 04:18 PM
Heather from Wilton

Wow...this was a "pull the car over and take it in" kind of story.

Apr. 06 2013 04:05 PM
frank from Oregon

I just heard this story on Radiolab... Simply stunning!

Apr. 06 2013 04:02 PM
Carolyn from Pittsburgh

Thank you for replaying this beautiful story of love, hope and perseverance. I heard it while on a drive to the airport, and for the first time was glad the airport is far from the city. I wish the best for Alan and Emilie, and for Emilie's parents. She is blessed to have all of them in her life.

Apr. 06 2013 02:47 PM
Evan from Pittsburgh

Heart-wrenching, deeply moving, and inspiring.

Apr. 06 2013 02:03 PM
Suzartisan

I was amazed and then fright set in. How many people have had accidents and lost their hearing or sight with some kind of brain trauma and are left incommunicative, yet perfectly aware? Are doctors or nurses thinking about how to communicate to an injured person aside from talking or seeing? The medical profession nearly let Emilie and her family down. Thank God for Alan.

Apr. 06 2013 01:29 PM
Marlene from Washington, DC

Is there any way to reconcile the experience of Alan, Susan and Emilie in "Lost and Found" with the data reported in "The Bitter End" about doctors who would rather die instead of receiving treatment to continue living after trauma like Emilie experienced? If not for blind faith and the love of family and friends, would chances of returning to a quality of life you are used to living be higher because they champion your survival vs. listening to the doctors who have seen enough death from similar situations to give up on you? If Susan had prepared herself to let Emilie go and be dissected because she put her faith in the medical experts, Emilie would not be alive to live and love and be loved. But when do you know? I lost my father in a hospital where staff had already written him off because of his age. I didn't know whether it was his time or if he would have been better at home, even if he lived a few days more but at least he would've been happier to be home, instead of that cold hospital. Sorry for the long narrative.

Apr. 06 2013 12:48 PM
Laura Bien from ypsilanti, mi

Stunning. Moving. This story nailed my feet to the floor next to my radio. Tears are still running from my eyes to have heard this incredible story. Absolutely riveting. Only TAL can approach the level of radio excellence that RadioLab regularly does. Well done, gentlemen.

Apr. 05 2013 04:03 PM
Lee Hillman

I play this amazing story every year for my 8th grade AVID students for Valentine's Day. Not only do I want to introduce them to Radiolab, but also to share with them this at once heartbreaking and heartwarming story of resilience and overcoming obstacles. Thank you Radiolab. xoxoxo

Feb. 10 2013 09:18 PM
David from New York, New York

I am deeply moved by Emilie, Alan and Susan's story, and I encourage all of those with financial means to visit Emilie's website and make a donation.

Feb. 09 2013 07:33 AM
cdkeli from massachusetts

Surely one of the greatest stories ever told - heartbreak, courage, patience, love, dedication, loyalty, insight, and a thrilling ending. But clearly Emily and her family, despite their fortitude, require our friendship and assistance in order to meet the obstacles ahead.

Dec. 14 2012 01:13 PM
Howard from Colorado

I heard this just this weekend. "Pull me out of the wall" frightened me to no end, as I recently suffered claustrophobia - the loss of control is frightening. But by the end of the story I had the biggest smile on my face I've ever had. What a happy ending!

Oct. 17 2012 12:09 AM
Rosie from Boston MA

Oh, this story made my day stop. The love in this story is palpable, and the miracle simply heart-opening. I wrote a novel called HELEN KELLER IN LOVE that tells the real story of Helen Keller's love affair with a man who she wanted to marry, and when I heard this story it brought to life for me that courageous woman--except now Emilie is living this story in such a loving, courageous way today. Thank you for this, RadioLab.

Oct. 15 2012 02:07 PM
PJ

Man, this is a great story. Such a great story that you should get out its way and let the people tell it. This was so overproduced that it was kind of distracting to listen to.

Oct. 03 2012 03:20 PM
Nikki Norberto from Piedmont

God bless Emilie and her boyfriend Alan! I have an Emily too, and there is something so special in that name. My Emily did not survive her brain injury, but she stayed strong until it was time for her to pass into the arms of God. They say love is not enough sometimes, but obviously it was for Emilie, her family, and her Alan. God bless all of you...always!

Sep. 12 2012 11:51 PM
laron from Louisiana

I had the pleasure of meeting Emily today.....What a beautiful SOUL! Welcome to our Softouch Family! Cannot wait til we meet again....Please look for me on facebook would love for us to stay in touch! Lots of Love, Laron Ruiz

Aug. 31 2012 03:48 PM
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Aug. 21 2012 01:20 AM
Kes

Just found this story...and I have repeated it to everyone I have encountered today, friends and strangers alike. Everyone just answers, "Amazing." What a triumph, Emilie and Alan!

Aug. 08 2012 10:40 PM
Alex Popov Jr. from Vancouver, Canada

Beautiful peace, I was near tears the entire way through, having to fight them back as I was in public. But does anyone know what the piano piece is in the background during Emilie's awakening?

Jul. 14 2012 07:49 PM
Marko Bee from Serbia

A story equally beautiful as it is sad. All the best wishes to Emilie and Alan from Novi Sad, Serbia.

Good luck.

Jun. 25 2012 05:44 PM
Mili from Cottage Grove, MN

I started to listen to RadioLab because my boyfriend played this 'lost& found' episode. He found fascinating the story of the pigeons and skip the end because.... well he is a boy. :) But I listened all the way through and I cried. It made me so sad and happy that Alan never gave up on her.

Jun. 08 2012 05:24 PM
Leslie

Im in 5th grade and heard this in class and started crying because i had the same experice with my dad but he died when i was 8 years old.He left 4 kids without a father now.:(

Jun. 07 2012 07:36 PM
JHFNYC from NYC

That was one of the most both sad and beautiful stories I ever heard...

Jun. 04 2012 02:41 PM
Steven from Boston, MA

I was driven to tears listening to this incredible story on Radiolab and want to send my heartfelt thoughts to Emilie, Alan and Emilie's family. This testament to the strength of love and hope is an inspiration to me. I think about this story often and wish the best for Emilie's recovery.

May. 24 2012 03:34 PM
Lydia

Wow! What an incredible story! I couldn't stop crying. I have children of my own. Alan is a very special young man and Emilie is one tough cookie in such a pint sized body. God Bless them both. This story has definitely inspired me to donate to Radio Lab. In addition, I will be contributing to Emilie. I hope Emilie makes a full recovery and lives a long wonderful life with Alan.

May. 19 2012 05:01 PM
D.R. from bklyn

How is Emilie doing now? How is Alan? It would be great to have a follow up on this extraordinary story.

May. 18 2012 08:37 PM

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May. 17 2012 05:48 AM
Susan Gossiaux from New Orleans

It is a wonderful Mother's Day. Emilie and Alan spent it with us at home. She is working very hard to become an independent, blind woman. Tomorrow, she is the inspirational graduate speaker at NOCCA, New Orleans Center for Creative Arts, where Em's art education and real journey began. The three of us, Al, Em's dad and I were totally in tears after listening to a rehearsal of her speech. Know that every one of you who thought of her and hoped for her recovery are a part of that speech. All I can say is thank you and trust in Alan's example of positive belief and never giving up on love. They are both here for a few days and continuing to create a beautiful world. Thank you RadioLab for sharing us with the world.

May. 13 2012 08:44 PM
Jkhoover from Denton

Thank you. You just changed my understanding of life. There are times you retreat to the dream world thru no fault of you're own. Sometimes that's you're only fallback position. Pull me out of the wall. Oh my god. So powerfull. I believe in life now in a brand new way

May. 12 2012 08:04 AM
Allie from Dallas

Incredible. Her blog hasn't been updated since may of 2011, any updates on how she's doing?

May. 11 2012 02:27 PM
alejandra martinez from clovis, new mexico

i love this story of two amazing people. i listen to the show at school will doing my work and i love it, when i listen to it its like im in the story living it. i love it its an amazing station just love it.

May. 08 2012 04:32 PM
Lael from San Diego

This is an inspiring and beautiful story. Emilie is a real fighter. Alan's love for her brought me to tears. May you both have long and happy lives.

May. 06 2012 04:45 PM
BJ from Mercerville,NJ

I am so glad this was available on the website. I heard the first part while driving but had to wait until I got home to hear the end.

Apr. 27 2012 02:51 PM
Michael

My comment is ironically the same as the last 2 here.........i was in the parking lot at work and had a hard time tearing myself out of the car and away from this story......i finally did only to go into work and listen to the last 10 mins in the office online.....so so so so so miraculous and amazing......i wish the world for Emilie and Alan and give A HUGE CHEERS to you for putting this together for others to hear...I've never heard a story like this

Apr. 19 2012 11:58 AM
Drew from Windsor, ON, Canada

Caught the last half of the story on my drive this morning. I literally had to pull to the side of the road to listen to the rest. It was heart-breaking and heart-warming. Simply amazing story of simply amazing people.

Apr. 19 2012 10:02 AM
Carol from Oakland

Heartbreaking and beautiful. I was listening on my headphones at work and could not hold back the tears. Reminded me of the Diving Bell and the Butterfly. Thank you for sharing this story with us (and so masterfully), Radiolab, and wishing all the best to Emilie, Alan, and family.

And now, how about some bike lanes?!

Apr. 19 2012 02:13 AM
Layla from Boston

A very touching story! A wonderful magical story! Thank you for sharing it.

Mar. 27 2012 08:59 PM
Hannele from MA

Just driving around doing everyday things today when this story came on the radio. I was riveted. Then moved. Deeply. Then had to pull over because the tears were blinding me. What a precious couple, may they be happy together for many years to come.

Mar. 27 2012 06:58 PM
larry

While listening to the story, the first thing that came to my mind when I heard that Emilie could not hear and see was to write on her hand/back/belly/arm. I actually feet angry that no medical personnel thought of that!!! What a shame! We need to fix our medical system. Some doctors are useless...

Mar. 27 2012 12:13 AM
Rawchef from Santa Monica

C'MON THERE MUST BE HUNDREDS OF COMMENTS ALL AGTEEING THAT THIS, THIS TRUE STORY IS BETTER THAN ANYTHING HOLLYEOOD CAN THINK OF, WONDERLUST? Seriously when thetes stories luke this ti tell? Quit making life anymore didicult n hire a hollyeogent ans get this amazing ordeal to the masses!

Mar. 24 2012 02:30 PM
jenny gardiner from Charlottesville, VA

Wow. I sat in a parking lot for 20 minutes listening to this and crying. What a fabulous story!

Mar. 03 2012 04:45 PM
Samantha

My husband came back from his walk with our 2 year old, to find me sobbing uncontrollably in the kitchen. "What's wrong?" he said, in horror. "She's alive!" I said, "He saved her!" Thank you and them for such an amazing, terribly sad and ultimately hopeful story. I hope they are doing well.

Feb. 19 2012 10:16 PM
ann augustine

Started listening to this one while at the gym. Found myself sobbing in mid sit up. GREAT, BEAUTIFUL, POWERFUL story.

Feb. 19 2012 12:00 AM
Jason

This was one of the most powerful stories I've heard in a very long time! Thank you for sharing this story.

Feb. 17 2012 09:07 PM
Julien from Montreal

This story was really moving, one of the best I've heard on radiolab... I couldn't help but relate it to another story I thought all you guys should know about. Mathieu Lefervre, another young promising artist also got hit by a truck while biking in New York. Unfortunaltly, he didn't had Emilie's chance... More info here :
http://www.wnyc.org/blogs/wnyc-news-blog/2012/feb/14/council-examines-nypd-actions-traffic-crime-investigations/
http://www.canadianart.ca/online/see-it/2011/10/27/mathieu_lefevre/
http://tracysooming.com/mathieu/

Feb. 15 2012 05:24 PM
Awade

Great story. It is comforting to know that love can conquer all.

Feb. 13 2012 09:02 PM
Chris

I've now caught this segment twice. Boyfriend I'd been dating 6 months was in a car accident. 6 weeks in a coma; 6 weeks more in the hospital. Doctors would only share information with his parents - they never told me he almost died several times while in the coma. 33 years later, 22 of it married, we're still together. Here's to a long and happy life together for Alan and Emilie also.

Feb. 12 2012 11:19 PM

Wow..that was amazing. Thank you to Emilie and Alan for sharing!

Feb. 07 2012 09:21 PM
JG from California

If this segment doesn't affect you, you are either Newt Gingrich or Mitt Romney. Sad, amazing, human story. Sharing it with everyone I know.

Feb. 07 2012 08:33 PM
K.C. Pan from Los Angeles

I was driving home from buying an engagement ring. I was very much touched by the love and conviction shown by Alan, the boyfriend, in this story. Emilie is a very lucky girl, even after all that has happened to her.

Good luck to them both.

Feb. 06 2012 06:27 PM
Rebecca schlief from Long beach Ca

I was Driving home from visiting my husband in a post acute rehab- I just happened to tune in to my local NPR station....
My husband was hit by a car 5 months ago- suffered a traumatic brain injury - it was like someone pushed delete...
He didn't know who I was - where he was and so on...
I only caught the last part of the story - where Alan talks about proving it to the doctors...
They couldn't see any cognitive function with my husband either but we got out the ipad and started working with him on apps created for tbi - we could see him in there..
Today he has made huge improvement but there is such a long way to go....
Thank you for this story - It really touched me

Feb. 04 2012 07:36 PM
Veronica from Los Angeles

Amazing story about two very strong young people! Makes you wonder do we really know what brain dead is and what Newt Gingrich would have done if he were Alan.

Feb. 04 2012 07:20 PM
vulgar from LA, CA

I just heard this story on the radio while taking a shower. I cried when I heard Emily's voice, I've never cried while listening to anything on the radio. Holy shit, I was glad to hear her voice.

Feb. 04 2012 07:13 PM
OMG

This is such a sad story but Emilie is so strong

Jan. 26 2012 02:38 PM

I never cry.
Except after listening to this story for the first time,

Jan. 22 2012 07:49 AM
Kris from Los Angeles

Dear lord, I felt awestruck and was sobbing a bit after that story. So amazing....

Jan. 21 2012 07:13 PM
Maryanne from Jacksonville,FL

I am in awe. I just heard your story. I never comment on stories. This was the most amazing and emotional journey I've ever been on while listening to a story on the radio. Thank you for sharing your story and thank you for reminding me what the power of love can do. Whoever produced this is a genius! I wonder if Emily went to Douglas Anderson school of the arts in Jacksonville, FL. Hearing her voice just brought the tears on!! Congratulations to Emily and Alan! Love wins again!!!

Jan. 21 2012 04:13 PM
Lisa from Minneapolis, MN

Thank you Susan for sharing your story of your daughter fighting for your life! What an amazing girl!

Jan. 09 2012 10:48 PM
Chard Lowden from Santa Rosa, California

Emilie's accident occurred on the first anniversary of my own vision loss. Although my loss was nowhere near as traumatic, it was sudden and I empathize with Emilie and Alan.
They both demonstrate the power of love that gives us the strength to move through whatever comes our way.
Bless you both. May you always endure.

Jan. 03 2012 01:01 AM
alex from DC

Two questions for the authors:
1.) Do Alan and Emilie still need donations? If so, where do I send them to?
2.) Does Alan have a twitter account? If so, what's his handle?

Thank you promoting this story.

Alex

Dec. 30 2011 11:12 PM
Jan

I just could not get out of the car the other day after hearing this beautiful story on NPR...obviously, I'm still thinking of them...the power of love, and the selflessness of that love in Alan for Emilie...may it give us all hope! Thanks for sharing.

Dec. 27 2011 11:27 PM
Eric from New Orleans

Anyone may contact Emilie or Alan by sending them a post card or letter to their P.O. Box 695, New York, NY 10009

Dec. 26 2011 12:31 AM
Denise Cregier from Brewster, NY

What a beautiful story. Makes me wonder about everyone in a mental state that cannot communicate with the world. I wonder if Emily would let me photograph her and her boyfriend or family. Any way to pass that along?

Dec. 21 2011 01:40 PM
christie pease from Burleigh heads Australia

A truly lovely story. It has brought tears to my eyes. Continued recovery to Emily. And to you Allen, we need more humans like you in the world. I wish you laughter everyday.
Peace and cheers, Christie

Dec. 18 2011 04:42 PM

What a heartfelt story with a promising ending. For those of us who have lost loved ones, this was a great light of hope that good outcomes are still possible.

Dec. 17 2011 07:08 PM
Cathy G; from Northridge

Just heard today on NPR and am still in shock -- I love miracle stories. A true miracle.

Dec. 17 2011 07:03 PM

This is... unbelievable. I am loving! OF THEM BOTH! Soul mates... how amazing.

Dec. 04 2011 09:54 PM
Andrea

reminds me of the book Johnny Got His Gun

Dec. 04 2011 08:00 PM
junior from Stpaul,MN

Was driving in a snowing day and caught the story by mistake...Had to pull over..with tears in my eyes..what a great story. Thank you.

Dec. 04 2011 02:14 AM
katie from Kalamazoo, MI

I am a night shift nurse and I was nearly late to work listening to this story on the way in! I had to hurry home in the morning to listen to the end of it on line! What a touching and fascinating story!

Nov. 29 2011 12:34 PM
trolle from New York - London

My heart dropped ten stories the moment I heard Emilie's voice, and I started crying.

Alan, you give me hope.

I have been listening to Radiolab since the beginning and I have a profound appreciation for the show.

It always inspires me

Nov. 27 2011 06:45 PM
Cynthia from Chicago

Amazing story. I donated and I hope others will too.

Nov. 26 2011 03:12 PM
-J

Emilie and Alan, your love for each other is truly inspiring! So beautiful!

Nov. 25 2011 11:10 PM
Interested in Conn.

Captivated by this truly amazing story. But wondering why it has what appears to be a big hole (did I miss part of it?) in that it neither addresses nor explains how the medical community thought this young lady was 'gone' when she clearly was not. What did the doctors base this on? I did not hear any mention of brain activity or whether that played a role and how the medical community was able to blow it so big time on this one.

Nov. 25 2011 02:32 PM
Nancy Gibson from Wisconsin

Dear Alan and Emilie,

I was at death's door after complications from cancer and my husband never gave up on me. He is the reason I live today. We listened to your story looking at each other remembering and reminding ourselves how grateful we are for our deep connection to each other. Occupational therapy is hard and he is right there in the room with me and helps me do the excercises at home. Keep regrowing your lives.. and love.. and hope. I am currently working with a young girl named Emily who has had back surgery that has left her with more physical limitations that she would like. I want you to know I am going to have her listen to your story. It is a teaching tale about endurance, hope and the power of love. I know it will help her.. My gratitude to you..Blessings on you both.. know you are in my thoughts tonight.. and likely for many more nights.. Nancy

Nov. 05 2011 09:14 PM
Lisa from Chicago

You can still donate to Emilie to aid in her recovery here:

http://www.emiliegossiaux.com/

Also, you can see her art from before the accident here.

Oct. 20 2011 01:16 AM
Diana from Virginia

Hearing Alan and Susan describe Emilie's condition after the accident, I have to admit I was truly terrified. Not everyone would've been as clear-minded and determined as Alan and Emilie under these devastating circumstances. But they prevailed and set a standard for the rest of us to observe just how precious life is--what it means for yourself and to those who deserve your existence.

Alan and Emilie, you guys truly deserve each others' existence.

Oct. 09 2011 11:09 PM
Jon from DC

Congrats. This story definitely made me choke up.

Oct. 06 2011 10:49 AM
Sarah from Flagstaff, AZ

When I listened to this episode, I was hiking up a mountain, and Kelly's story was at its emotional peak when I reached the summit. At that point, I was having myself a good cry before I realized there was someone else on the summit doing everything he could to avoid eye contact with the blubbering girl who had just invaded his quiet commune with nature.

Ah well...

A heart-wrenching and beautifully told story. I'll definitely donate to her cause.

Sep. 30 2011 04:07 PM
nick

i think alan should get into horses

Sep. 30 2011 09:19 AM
Lisa

You can still donate to Emilie to aid in her recovery here:

http://www.emiliegossiaux.com/

Sep. 29 2011 03:37 PM
L.Schmidt from NYC

Has anyone considered that the trucker is being used as a scapegoat .Consider blantant negligence, on behave of a doctor, doctors, or a hospital, the real reason this young girl (for whom my heart aches) can no longer see.

Sep. 28 2011 03:14 PM
Liam from Burnley, Lancashire, UK.

Fantastic work, RL. An utterly heart wrenching,emotive and awe-inspiring story, beautifully told and amazingly produced. Keep well everybody, and best wishes to 'The Boyfriend' and 'The Girlfriend'!

Sep. 12 2011 12:20 PM
Heather S from Dallas, TX

Alan and Emilie, you are both amazing. Thank you so much for sharing your story.

Aug. 30 2011 03:16 PM
Juliet from London

Thanks for sharing such an incredible story. Very best wishes to Alan and Emilie.

Aug. 18 2011 01:05 PM
Leslie from New York

so inspiring . .

Emily and Alan, I wish you both well!

Aug. 15 2011 09:23 PM
Erica from New York

Alan is one in a million. Everything else in
this story was perhaps unavoidable, but Alan was the miracle, the angel. Without Alan there would be no story. Alan, I hope you always trust and listen to your powerful innner voice!

The Rusk program is a fascinating place - worthy of a story of it's own. An old boyfriend of mine who is a doctor was hit by a truck several years ago, suffered a TBI and spent several years there. I went to several of the graduations. At the time he wanted help commiting suicide. Now he is practicing again! There is alot of confusion and alot of spiritual transformation possible around traumatic
brain injuries. Do a story on Rusk, Radiolab!

Aug. 15 2011 10:53 AM
david

it is sunday evening in nyc.
i have just listened, on the edge of my seat, to this incredible story of persistence, love and mystery.
i cannot help but think that there is a subtext to this moving story that points to a self that exists outside the neural pathways of the brain.
it is a place that science seems to deny, but this story seems to substantiate.
thank you, emily and alan, for sharing this inspirational story.

Aug. 14 2011 10:25 PM
G&S from Manhattan

Just moved to New York and this was the first story I have ever listened to on Radiolab. My girlfriend and I were so moved by their story and that Alan didn't give up on her. We think Emilie's story should be made into a movie. We wish you both the best of luck for your future.

Aug. 13 2011 05:24 PM
wbez member from Chicago

I wept and wept. This story resonated so much with what I hoped for with my own father. He was in a coma from January til his passing just 2 weeks ago. I hope he didn't feel trapped in a wall where we couldn't reach/help him.
I'm immensely impressed with this particular episode and Radiolab in general. Thank you so much for what you've shared with us.

Jul. 20 2011 05:36 PM
Mahmoud S. from Miami Gardens

Dear Emilie & Alan,

I just listened to your story on RadioLab and was moved and compelled to write to you. Emilie, I'm in awe of your incredible spirit and conviction to live. Your display of courage under such unfathomable odds is hard to comprehend and I find myself at a loss for words. I hope and pray that you rehabilitate to a measure that lets live and function free from pain and that you continue to demonstrate your zeal for living a life full of vigor, optimism, enthusiasm and promise.

Alan, sir, I take my hat off to you! The word that comes to mind when I think about you is BACKBONE. (Alan "Backbone" Lundgard). I think that only the true love you have for Emilie inspired you to do whatever was necessary to get through to her. You have an incredible heart and your compassion, tenderness and maturity is enviable. The love you two share just tugs at my heart strings.

As I just learned on the same episode of RadioLab, I hope the both of you, just like pigeons, will be each other’s mate for life. And if one of you should for some reason be locked in a cage with another, that the other will fly back in a jealous rage to be there and kick the others' a$$!

Jul. 10 2011 09:27 PM

Although this was from a January program, we here in South Florida are just hearing it in July. Emilie's story had me in tears when I heard it Friday, and I'm listening to it again on rerun with my wife today (Sunday). Wow. Love does conquer (almost) all.

Jul. 10 2011 07:43 PM
GDK from Fort Lauderdale

Okay, I'm a guy and teared up too. How could you not? I was driving back from an all day meeting in Miami and was fortunate to be in the car long enough to catch this full story...amazing! This should teach us so many things not the least of which are living life to its fullest, effort, not giving up on others, etc. etc.

Jul. 09 2011 08:43 AM
Angel from Miami, FL

I actually teared up listening to that story. Both kinds of tears.

Jul. 08 2011 06:15 PM
Susan from Santa Barbara, CA

Alan, Emilie, Susan and Eric ~

It is through the telling of stories such as yours that others, facing equally daunting circumstances, are able to encounter hope and open the door to possibility. Your relentless optimism and determination allowed the door to open and allowed the rest of Emilie's life to emerge. Bravo for never letting go and, from those of us who have walked in your shoes, through the same streets in hell, welcome to the light. It keeps getting better - season after season, year after year. May your joy be endless.

Jun. 15 2011 10:50 AM
Lisa from CA from Irvine, CA

My son suffered a TBI (traumatic brain injury) 5 years ago. (USMC). He is blind in one eye and has no peripheral vision in the other. He lost his pituatary gland and had part of his right frontal lobe removed. Like Emilie, he is a fighter. Today he is writing, recording, and performing songs! Emilie's story was very moving. Alan is amazing. I wish the best for the entire family. You never know how strong you are until you are tested.

Jun. 14 2011 10:43 PM
Bryan Heitz from Indiana

Thanks for this!! My sister suffered a TBI almost two months ago from a head on collision. The doctors (and some family) wanted us to 'pull the plug' within a few days. Doctors are not gods & goddesses; they only suffer from a superego. My sister has began breathing on her own, responding to commands, opens her eyes, swallows, and has been moved into a rehab. All of these things I was told she would never do on her own. HOPE. LOVE.

Jun. 13 2011 11:14 AM
Jacob From Logsden

What's WOW spelled backwards?

May. 24 2011 05:33 PM
Hedley from Toronto

A loving testament to the art of living. Beautifully played, beautifully told.

May. 23 2011 02:10 PM
Shamus Gillen from Charleston, SC

Absolutely touching and motivational story. Emilie & Alan are why it's great to be alive.

May. 23 2011 02:02 PM
Beth from nc

incredibly story......

May. 22 2011 08:16 PM
John Li from Pittsburgh, PA

Simply amazing...

May. 22 2011 06:30 PM
Zoe from Minnesota

I loved this story it warmed my heart! Art lives on!

May. 16 2011 08:47 PM
serena tideman from Pacific NW

Emilie's story is so inspiring. From personal experience I hold great hope for her. In 1993 I was hit by a white minivan and was given a traumatic brain injury. I had to relearn how to walk and talk and suffered from balance problems and aphasia. Within a few months I had regained most of my capacities and could play cello again. I have since had a career performing music around the world, though being organized is still difficult for me, I am so greatful to be alive and to have music.

May. 16 2011 02:24 AM
Kathleen

Thank you for sharing your story of hope.

May. 15 2011 06:13 PM
Zoe from San Francisco

Emilie, Alan, Susan,

You are such courageous, bright, strong individuals. At one point in the story, Alan mentioned that he is thinking of new ways to help Emilie make art. Remember that a creative spirit is never dampened. Emilie can and will find her expression with your love and support. Thank you for sharing your story.

With love and best wishes,
Zoe

May. 15 2011 03:44 PM
Karen from florida

May 15, 2011. I just heard your story on Radiolab. Courageous, touching, wonderful; don't stop!

May. 15 2011 03:04 PM
Emily from Oakland.

Radiolab has mastered the art of storytelling. This segment is brilliant, a beacon of light. Emilie and Allen, your love is joins the ranks of Romeo and Juliet, Orpheus and Euridyce, & Tristan and Isolde.

May. 12 2011 01:59 PM
Hisae from Berkeley, California

Will remember this always.

May. 10 2011 03:03 PM
Kim M from Connecticut

Beautiful and touching story! Best of luck to Emilie and Alan. Thanks for sharing!

May. 07 2011 10:33 AM
Justin Sandoval from Eugene, OR

Emilie's mother said it all, "love is the only thing that survives." Thanks you guys. Thanks for spreading stories that inspire love and hope.

-Justin

May. 05 2011 01:55 PM
Abigail Diskin from Eugene, OR

Possibly the most incredible story I've ever heard. There are no words to describe the true and timeless power of love and the human soul. I am so grateful for the stories you guys tell; you are doing such a service to us all!!! As for Emilie, I plan to send her a poem in the mail as well as a donation. You can too, just go here: http://www.emiliegossiaux.com/

May. 04 2011 04:04 PM
john from santa monica

What a wonderful thing you have done here! Thank you for making telling this beautiful story!

May. 03 2011 07:12 PM
JAK from CT

Beautiful story of strength and love. Keep up the fight and inspire. I look forward to seeing the movie!

Apr. 30 2011 04:11 PM
Tom Domingues from Los Angeles

Brilliant.

Apr. 25 2011 12:08 AM
jeanne cunningham

Truly a driveway moment for me too. Or rather a parking lot moment when going to the gym yesterday. amazing and inspiring story

Apr. 24 2011 01:52 PM
Emily from New Haven

This is such an incredible story. Emilie and Alan, we're all rooting for you. Thank you, Radiolab.

Apr. 24 2011 12:43 AM
Seth from 91801

Another comment from a person that was blown away by this story - I held back the waterworks - but just barely...absolutely captivating!

Apr. 23 2011 11:43 PM
Sandy Bernier from Boston

This story had me crying in traffic today. I was thinking of how amazing it is, the power of love, and pure communication. when Emilie asked to be pulled from the wall...and Alan, using his intuition, figured it out....oh man, the bricks came tumbling down.

Crying alone in my car, sobbing for a second after the segment was over... Made me once again realize how precious and short life is. thank you for this moment today and I wish you an amazing journey of recovering, rediscovery and faith.

Thank you.

Apr. 23 2011 10:34 PM
Shane Windstorm from cambridge ma

I have been a long time listener and this particular story inspired me to come on here and post.

I heard this story on the way to work and I was so moved I stayed in the car until it was over.

So moving and so well told I was completly captivated and felt like I was right there in the hospital room.

Radiolab has brought me to tears and I am grateful.

Apr. 23 2011 04:37 PM
Liliana Glenn from Natick, MA

All the best to you two - you have more than a story...so much more!!! Thank you for sharing xox

Apr. 23 2011 04:16 PM
alene from new york

such an amazing, beautiful story.

Apr. 22 2011 01:29 PM
Michael Paladini from Stow, MA

I am a huge fan of RadioLab. This is one of the most incredible, moving stories you have ever done. Thank you.

Apr. 21 2011 10:10 PM
Ruth from Jerusalem, Israel

Thank you so much for sharing Emilie and Alan's story. I was so moved by it that I listened to it twice.

Apr. 17 2011 12:50 PM
Matt Albert from Pittsfield,Ma

Hi, I just heard the story and felt compelled to write and tell you about Ortho-Bionomy. It is a bodywork system that is very gentle yet profound. I believe it will help Emily in her rehab. Go to Ortho-Bionomy.org and you will find many people in NY that are very capable. I hope this is helpful. You may contact me for any reason!

Apr. 15 2011 12:07 PM
Emily from Lexington, KY

I have been moved to tears by Radiolab before, but never quite like while listening to this story. Emilee and Alan, your love and stength is amazing. Thank you so much for sharing your story. Best of luck to the both of you.

Apr. 14 2011 02:00 PM
Ali from Portland, OR

Thank you for sharing this story. I was just sitting down to have dinner, a perfect time of silence, and I was so moved by the commitment of love between two people and the perseverance of those who love. What strength in Emilie's will for life and perhaps to stay with the ones she loves.

Apr. 14 2011 12:32 AM
Valerie from Portland

I, too, could not turn this off as I pulled up to my apt. Killed the engine and listened with my mouth open 'til the end. beautiful.

Apr. 14 2011 12:16 AM
Adonis from Palo Alto, CA

Amazing story! We're all hoping for the best recovery Emilie, and we're sure you'll make it! And Alan: great job man! More useful and enterprising than the doctors!

"Best of luck to Emilie and Alan and thank you for sharing your story" as Mintie said.

Apr. 14 2011 12:15 AM
Chris Autio from Montana

I'm not the first whose eyes moistened to this radiolab cast. I listened to it a 4 in the morning when I couldn't sleep. I could sense there was something on the "other side of the
wall." It was that bridge of love Emilie's mother referred to in her storytelling. And it was Alan's undying love, his letters upon her hand. wow.

Apr. 13 2011 06:11 PM
SMA from Portland, OR

This is a truly touching story that goes right to the heart of being human and the meaning of love. I am so grateful to these people for sharing this personal struggle, trial, and healing. As always, beautifully produced and told.

Does anyone know the song that the piano phrase is from at the moment that Alan is talking about sending Emilie out on her bicycle? It is so familiarly haunting...

Apr. 13 2011 02:11 PM
Tom Schneider

http://www.emiliegossiaux.com/
is Emilie's page - you can contribute there!

Apr. 12 2011 08:47 PM
Veronique from Miami

Amazing show!

I am very amused by the many comments before mine with people sitting in the idle cars in their driveways listening to the end of your captivating show. That makes for quite a carbon footprint for Radiolab! Try to turn off your engines, please, avid listeners. :)

Apr. 12 2011 06:47 PM
Ed Guzman from Loma Linda, CA

I turned to the show as I pulled into my driveway. I was immediately captivated and so I sat there until the end. I've come back to listen and find more.

Please, don't mess this up!

Apr. 12 2011 04:24 PM
Otto Maddox from Mountain View, CA

I was listening to your show "Lost and Found" while driving around town running errands on Saturday.

As I pulled into my driveway the segment "Finding Emilie" started. I was so enthralled that I sat in my car, in my driveway, hanging on every word being said.

I found myself deeply touched by the story and want to thank your team for creating a true masterpiece of a radio show.

Keep up the great work!

Apr. 12 2011 03:48 PM
nina kaip from New Hudson, Michigan

I pulled into my garage and sat in my car to finish listening to this story... I couldn't turn it off! wow! what an amazing story! I wish that kind of love for everyone! Alan you are a wonderful man! And Emilie you are a very BRAVE woman! Good luck to both of you! I know this was aired originally in (i think) January, but, Please keep up updated!!! Thank you again for sharing your story!!
nina :}

Apr. 12 2011 02:09 PM
Emma from New Haven, CT

Phenomenal.

Apr. 11 2011 11:22 PM
Milo

Amazingly moving story that I'd love toshare with my boyfriend, but you're webcast is broken~

Apr. 11 2011 02:36 AM
Shaun from Portland OR

Fix your webcast. Pretty lame if you cant listen to it in full.

Apr. 11 2011 01:44 AM
Amy

So moving. Thank you much for sharing this amazing story of hope and love.

Apr. 10 2011 07:17 PM
jim gurney from Sunnyvale, CA

Couldn't get out of my car until this ended. Great radio!

Apr. 10 2011 01:58 PM
Hayley Oddi from San Francisco

I was moved so deeply by this story, I even now, am emotional thinking about it. Allen, you deserve a title. Without you who knows what? A true love story, something only legends speak of.

Apr. 10 2011 02:07 AM
Dave Robins from Sherwood, Oregon

I was at the YMCA working out today. Luckily my 1/2 hr was timed just right to hear this story. This is a wonderful story about love and hope and belief in the human spirit. Thank you for airing it. I have referred many of my friends to your site to hear it. My wife is listening right now.

Apr. 09 2011 09:04 PM
grace from San Jose, CA

I heard the last few minutes of this story while on line at the carwash today, and had to come back and listen to the whole thing. WOW. Amazing, inspirational and beautiful. Thank you, radiolab, and all the best to Emilie and Alan.

Apr. 09 2011 08:05 PM
Eric Blossom from California

I got all choked up listening to this. My son spent the first two weeks of last June in Bellevue's Neurological ICU (the same floor as the SICU. He fell off a building and impaled his head on a wrought iron fence. He's just a year older than Emilie and Alan and I also got a call at 3AM. Much of the story is similar and much different, but it brought back a flood of memories of this last year and my son and his girlfriend who was and is instrumental in his recovery.

Apr. 09 2011 07:59 PM
Greg from Seattle

Wow, that was a pretty amazing story. Demonstrated that doctors know very little and refuse to believe until confronted with overwhelming evidence. People with a personal interest in their loved ones are probably the best ones to observe changes and have hope.

Apr. 09 2011 04:04 PM
Fry from Somewhere between 125th st and the Battery

I remember reading about her accident after work one day so i was surprised and thrilled to hear this segment. I am a bike messenger in nyc and this story was particularly moving for me. I wondered what had happened as there was only one follow up story about her accident. So stoked that she is recovering! Cant wait to see more art by her!

Apr. 09 2011 02:35 PM
Rana from Texas

Found you on FB! My husband is a TBI patient with no speech or motor skills! Emilie and Alan give me HOPE for a future!

Thank you for sharing!

Apr. 08 2011 05:22 PM
julie Steinberg Marton from Chicago

Powerful, amazing... Radiolab always impresses and never ceases to amaze me.

Apr. 07 2011 12:41 AM
Yisroel

anything that I would want to say has been already voiced by other commenters. one big giant 'ditto'

Apr. 06 2011 09:32 PM
Betsy

My husband and I listened to Emilie and Alan's story this weekend. And I just feel so profoundly moved.

Apr. 06 2011 08:18 PM
ruben

I was listening to this segment at work and as much as I tried not to, I began crying. Wow!! One of the best stories I've ever heard. Thank you, I do so appreciate your efforts.

Apr. 06 2011 06:32 PM
Phil from Omaha, NE

I love Radiolab... stories like this are exactly why I do.

Apr. 06 2011 02:06 PM
Julia J from Brooklyn, NY

Thank you Radiolab, Emilie, and Alan.

Apr. 05 2011 05:33 PM
Josh G from Austin, TX

This story swept me off my feet. Like others, I was driving while listening and had to pull over to listen because I was so encompassed in the moment.

Apr. 05 2011 05:21 PM
Brian

OH! WOW!

Apr. 05 2011 04:22 PM
Cooper Dooper

Emilie Gossiaux & Alan Lundgard are two angels who were meant to meet on earth...
a few of the pure souls still left @ Cooper.

Apr. 04 2011 06:03 PM
Lisa

Emilie still needs your help. You can go to her website and donate there, or navigate to her Ety store where all proceeds go to her recovery:

http://www.emiliegossiaux.com/

Kindness of strangers can go a long way!

Apr. 03 2011 05:38 PM
Pat from Michigan

I cannot stop thinking about Adam and Emilie. Maybe its because I am a hospice nurse and frequently see brain damaged folks in coma I got to thinking. Are there others out there, seemingly unreachable who are really trying to make themselves heard? Could this be the emergence of "Annie Sullivan" therapy? I will certainly keep this in mind, although, I admit Emilie's circumstances were unique in many ways, starting with her hearing loss and needing special hearing aids. It really gives you hope that strong enough love conquers all including this seemingly insurmountable situation. You go Alan! What a couple you two are!

Apr. 03 2011 03:05 PM
Beth from Michigan

I have often listened to RadioLab as "background music," but this story held me captive and kept me in my car for 10 minutes after arriving at my destination. The story: beautiful and inspiring. The editing: genius, with the various voices coming in, sometimes sharing a sentence. I want to share it with everyone I know. I am now a die-hard RadioLab fan. Thanks!!

Apr. 03 2011 01:02 AM
Mitch Poll from Michigan

I listened with an intent and thoughtful heart to your radio program today. I was in the car coming home from work and purposely drove the back roads slowly so I could thoroughly bask in the lovely story. In August 1988 I had a brush with heartache that leaves me prone to cry at such stories. My childhood neighbor, girlfriend, and wife of not quite six years was hit by a drunk driver. She was crumpled and twisted such that she could not breathe for about 20 minutes. The EMT's got her heart going but the damage was done and she passed away the next morning. Barb was a beautiful 27 year old woman with a bright future. I have always wonder how I/we would have fared had she somehow survived. But for the grace of God there go I to be sure. My prayers are certainly with this young couple. They certainly are a testament to the power of LOVE and the good man is capable of doing. I do not know what the future holds for them but pray it is blessed with miraculous healing and kindness.

Apr. 02 2011 11:29 PM
Sherry Saint-Germaine from VT

I listened so intently today. I am in a very difficult life situation at the moment (I'll spare you the details...)but listening to this story, I know I can do this.
Sometimes I think human beings are idiots. But when I hear stuff like this... it is as if we are ALL magical creatures.
Thank you, Radio-Lab, so much.
Sherry in VT

Apr. 02 2011 06:53 PM
Jason from Austin, TX

Jad, Robert, and the rest of the RL crew: as you can tell by the rest of these comments you knocked it out of the park.

On those days when nothing is working, when you're frustrated, or when you feel like you've been faking it all along (all creative people have those moments), I hope you remember how you connected with your listeners and know that, in spite of your feelings, you really are artists. Well done.

Mar. 31 2011 05:09 PM
Jim Rockwell from Charleston

Jad, Robert; obviously this one touched lots of folks. I was on my headphones at work, and had everyone wondering why this old curmudgeon was crying! Very, very touched. And sending prayers to Alan and Emilie. Thank you, so much!

Mar. 31 2011 02:34 PM
Amy in SC

I cried like a little baby. It's wonderful to be able to share lives like this.

Mar. 31 2011 11:22 AM
James Franssen from Eugene Oregon

Wow. I mean.. Wow. I was listening to this and the first part of the story came on as I was just turning into the Market of Choice in Eugene Oregon. I had to stay in my car in the parking lot just to listen to it finish. A car parked right in front of me and the couple inside stayed in their car for the same amount of time as it took for this show to finish.

When it ended, I got out of my car and noticed they both got out of their car at the same time. As I wiped the tears from my face I said "Amazing show, right?" They said "OH God it was amazing, we thought you might have been listening to it as well." I said "Well, if you saw me wiping the tears from my eyes, you know it was a good show!" =) I'm a 6'1" athletically built guy with a beard, and even by my own terms I think I'm pretty tough, but I cried.

Thank you for this beautiful show.

Mar. 31 2011 04:54 AM
Luis from Torrance, CA

What a beautiful and touching story. I was in tears toward the end, and afterward when I reflect on my current and past relationships. Alan's love for Emilie is so moving, and gives me hope that true love like this still exists. I wish the very best for Alan and Emilie.

Mar. 30 2011 02:47 PM
Scott Williams

The story of Emilie and Alan was the first Radiolab piece I have listened to. I caught it while driving the Causeway over Lake Pontchartrain. What an amazing, triumphant story. Emilie is truly inspirational. I sat in my car, unaware that I was actually home, until the story was over. Just hearing it restored a little faith in me about the power of true love. Love like Alan's for Emilie is something that I no longer thought was real. Thank you both for sharing and restoring that faith in me that, remarkably, proves love will find a way. I did not donate much, but I felt it was the least I could do for what hearing you story has changed in me.

God bless,

Scott Williams

Mar. 28 2011 02:51 AM
Peter from Ohio

Thanks to NPR, Allen and Emily.
My girlfriend and I had bad argument yesterday night and we did not talk all day as we both were busy at work today. After work as I was going to get some dinner, I was listening to this story and I did not want to get out of my car until it ended. I had tears in my eyes at the end of the story and made me think about my girlfriend. Life is too short to be mad about silly things

Thanks to Allen and Emily and NPR for preventing a breakup.

God bless you all

Mar. 27 2011 10:15 PM
Andrew from Chico, CA

As others have mentioned the world stopped when I was listening to the story of Emille and Allen. A true love story. My hats off to a young man, deeply in love, not married to his girl, but not willing to give up when everyone else was. He could have walked, but he didn't. In my book he deserves a medal of honor - for love in it's finest form.

Mar. 27 2011 09:25 PM
Jeannine Gendron

Dearest Emilie, Alan and Radiolab, Thank You, You have touched me so deeply today March 27, 2011. Your family and Alan are incredible, so much love there. Today is the first time I let have let go of my tears really hard, I lost my daughter Alexis is a car accident on January 10th, 2010. And althought she was the only one who didn't make home that morning, her friend Chris has spent many months in rehab here in New Hampshire in this last year and a quarter. His progress is inproving and his journey will be long. To you Emilie you go girl, prove the medical folks wrong everyday and my you and Alan have a wonderful future.

Mar. 27 2011 04:14 PM
Chas

I got in trouble on an airline flight because I just couldn't stop listening to the story on my MP3 when I was instructed to turn off all electronics for landing. The scolding I received from the flight attendent was worth hearing the conclusion of the piece. What a beautiful story of resilience and determination of all the people involved in this story. Also made my eyes all moist.

Mar. 27 2011 02:30 PM
Bob from Oklahoma City

This was a beautiful and heart wrenching life event.
It reminded me of two other not-so-real, but just as poignant and scary stories that I have not though about for decades. The first is an old Twilight Zone episode of a boy who mysteriously disappeared, but never left his home. He had walked through a wall...a portal...locked in another dimension. He was lost...trying to communicate...could hear, but could not be heard.
The second, a radio magazine short story, about a fellow with terminal cancer who decided to fight the disease on his own terms. Through the use of a strong dose of hallucinatory drugs, he entered his own body and fought in hand-to-hand combat with the disease. After a great struggle and much time, he won the war. He was cured of the disease, but was locked inside...able to see and hear, but unable to be heard. On the outside, he was a vegetable. Inside, he was screaming... desperate to get out. He had no Alan to help him through the wall of his own skin.

Mar. 25 2011 10:32 PM
Mathieu from Los Angeles

Hand down, the most beautiful radio story I have ever heard. Well done.

Mar. 24 2011 01:03 PM
Ece

This is an amazing story. I firmly believe that what Emilie experienced will only make her stronger and a more successful artist.

I also wanted to let Emilie know about a blind Turkish painter, Esref Armagan, whom I had heard talk a few years ago: http://www.armagan.com/paintings.asp. He is blind from birth as far as I know, but I thought Emilie and him might have some fruitful conversations about art.

Mar. 19 2011 10:36 PM
JG from Brooklyn

Thanks for sharing this story - it's amazing and affected me to the point of making me cry while I listened to it in my car. I am glad that Emilie has people who love her so much that they have helped pull her 'out of the wall.' From the sound of it, I think they have achieve it.

Mar. 19 2011 01:06 PM
Stephen from Denver, CO

My mother raised me and my brother as a full time artist. Now she is bed most of the time and can do only a small bit of art. Now I take care of her. I feel sorry for her not being able to do what she used to do (and she feels sorry for herself). The fact that Emilie has been so challenged at the beginning of a life, rather than at the end is heart breaking, yes, but it is inspiring to those of us who need to understand that we don't know at all what being truly challenged in life is like. Thanks, Emilie, for challenging me to raise above myself.

Mar. 19 2011 12:09 AM
Stefan from New Jersey

"To do rehab on somebody you have them reacting to you" end of the quote. And this is so untrue! Just do a lot of exercises, bend finger by finger, toes, move arms, jaws, just anything like that. It works! Do not let the body of that person"get lazy". I am so sure about this because of the experience of the friend of mine, her mom has been in coma since last Dec and now she can move, she can see, she can talk. Just because of that hard work on her muscles, day by day. Do not let those people to rest to much, make them active, just like working with puppets!

Mar. 18 2011 11:28 PM
yup from Miller

this may be messed up, but whats the difference between emile and anyone else in a similar situation?

I'm not saying that her cause isn't warrented. But, there are a lot of people out there who's situation gets messed up due to chance occurences, and they dont get anywhere near the support this chick gets.

her art is great, but perhaps we should find an organization that supports treating all people who get effected by chance occurences--perhaps we should focus our money on politicians who secure universal health care and all that. Just cause she's a white hetero artist from brooklyn shouldn't overlook our need and our responsibility as citizens to secure a healthcare system that doesn't require said boyfriend to figure out that she actually isn't brain dead.

Mar. 15 2011 01:29 AM
Katherine Donohue from Portland, Ct.

I heard this story on March 12th. It is especially touching due to the fact that recently a friend lost her brother after he fell down a set of stairs had a TBI and everything that could go wrong did and he died. I have a very close young friend who was hit two weeks ago by a drunk driver and is now in a rehabilitation center recovering (thank God) from a TBI. I was heartened by the ability not to give up and Adam's (not to mention Emilie's family) just would not give up. Who would ever think to spell out words on the hand. God love you all.

Mar. 14 2011 10:35 AM

It's March, but I heard this for the first time yesterday. I will be hearing it again cause I want to play it for my husband.

Thank you to Emilie, Adam, and Radiolab for sharing this story and spreading its love and strength.

Mar. 13 2011 07:11 AM
Bob Thompson from Bristol, CT

Amazing story. Was late for work listening to this beautiful story. My heart goes out to this family's courage and strength.

Mar. 12 2011 04:16 PM
Chris from Old Saybrook

The world around me stopped while listening to Emilie story. A wonderful account about how the impossible becomes possible against all odds.

Mar. 12 2011 04:09 PM
Nora from New York

This was quite possibly the most heart wrenching and lovely story I've ever had the privilege to hear. Thank you for sharing with us. Now stop cutting onions so I can quit crying.

Mar. 09 2011 08:26 PM
Lisa from Chicago

Buy or sell art at the Help Emilie storeon Etsy, started by Emilie's friend to raise money for her recovery. Spread the word and the good karma:

http://www.etsy.com/shop/helpemilie

Emilie's own art can be seen here:
http://www.emiliegossiaux.com/

Mar. 09 2011 11:04 AM
Eth

This is such a beautiful story. I only wish I could hear it all. The audio file seems to be corrupted around the 10:00 mark, which is a shame. I want to know what happens, and I wish Emilie the absolute best.

Mar. 08 2011 10:28 AM
Susan from New York City

So many have asked for Emilie's Story. Yesterday, I made up my mind to begin writing it down. There is so much more to tell and understand about this soft, little person with a giant's heart and will. Not sure how to do this, but will keep you all posted on www.emiliegossiaux.com blog. Thank you RADIOLAB and their many friends and lovers.

Mar. 05 2011 11:35 AM
Abdel from College Station, TX

I have this lottery ticket for weeks now. i can look at it because im just too scared i wont win. if i do though, my first expense is to pay all your medical bills, your rent, your education etc...thats a promise!

Mar. 04 2011 11:41 PM
Rosa from Jakarta, Indonesia

Such a beautiful story... Please donate to help Emilie: http://www.emiliegossiaux.com/

Mar. 04 2011 09:00 PM
Sam

Queeny, I hope you get all your money and all the love needed to recover. Bye for now.

Mar. 04 2011 07:33 AM
Steve

I guess Emilie could of gone much worse. She could of get stuck mentally in the movie "Hell Comes To Frogtown" instead of one she got stuck in.

Mar. 01 2011 01:12 PM
Heather from Colorado

Not much else can be said that hasn't been said already. Emilie and Alan I will always keep this story with me, it will always remind me to keep faith, hope and determination in the hardest, most challanging times in my life. AND Radiolab staff thank you so much for bringing meaningful, intelligent stories to our lives!!

Feb. 25 2011 11:48 PM
Drew from Utah from Utah

Great story of recovery and determination to help others.

I urge all reading this to donate as I just did using paypal.

Unfortunately in the US no one can afford to get sick or have an accident. Until congress can sober up, we need to band together and help one another.

Sadly we are all just one illness or accident from bankruptcy.

Get Well soon Emily!! You are blessed in many ways!

Feb. 25 2011 06:28 PM

Kudos Radiolab!
That was the one. Yep, that one was it. That was the podcast that sent me (after I regained my composure of course) straight here to the website to donate. However, my daughter and I decided on the way that Emilie could probably use the money more . . . so maybe next payday you'll get yours. In the meantime, thank you for a brilliantly told story about some truly beautiful souls. I'm still shaken by the honesty of those cell phone recordings. Alan and Emilie, we all owe you a great debt for sharing your hope with us. May your long lives be fully lived and your young love last forever . . .

Feb. 24 2011 09:31 PM
Nancy Liguori from nyc

Emilie and Alan's story is one of the most amazing you have ever portrayed. You (almost) made me cry on the bus! I kept my composure, barely. Nicely done.

Feb. 24 2011 07:53 PM
Marie from San Francisco, Ca

When ever I download a radiolab podcast I savor it as long as I can, like a tasty little morsel. Wait for the right moment to listen to it by myself without distraction.

This story about Emily & Alan and of course Susan (bless her) was so very touching. How wonderful it must me to be so young and to have found something brilliant in another human being. Alan recognized that Emily was worth fighting for and did not give up.

Susan, you must feel so lucky to have Emily back and to know that she is loved.

Feb. 23 2011 08:43 PM
Howard from Maryland

She had me at "Pull me out of the wall". Wow! This is the most amazing story I've ever heard. Love found a way. Love bridged the gap.

Feb. 23 2011 01:46 PM
klm

Unbelievable, radio lab has never shared a better story. Can't stop thinking about Emilie and Alan; I wish her all the best in her recovery. Looks like the family could use a little help with the finances, you can donate on her site: http://www.emiliegossiaux.com/

Feb. 22 2011 11:20 PM

Last night I played this story to my wife and she was deeply moved as well. The story is of course inherently beautiful but I was also struck by the magnificent way Radiolab presented it.

Living in Australia we get a lot of trashy content from the US on TV and Radio. I think a lot of my fellow Australians don't realise how classy Americans can be.

Feb. 22 2011 06:23 PM
Samantha from Boston

This is one of the best love stories I have ever heard. Dammit, Radiolabe, you made me cry again!
As someone who is terribly single (and have been feeling it lately) hearing this story actually made me feel like it's okay to wait for this kind of amazing love. The love shown between Emilie and her mother was another incredible part of this story.
Thank you for telling your story. I hope to see/hear/know of Emilie's art in the future. Best wishes to you all.

Feb. 22 2011 01:25 PM
Nico from Bangkok

I haven't cried in more than year.

When Alan said his "title", i bursted in tears.

I wish them all the happiness in the world.

Thanks Radiolab

Feb. 22 2011 01:20 PM
Adrian

I'm a 42 year-old crusty sonofagun, and I'm tears over this story. Kudos.

Feb. 22 2011 12:52 PM

Congragulations ! That was a beautiful story about Emilie and Alan and it was presented by you guys perfectly. As someone else said you should win an award for this masterpiece. And Alan should be given the Legion of Honour.

Feb. 21 2011 11:34 PM
Angie

That was some of the most riveting radio programming I have ever heard. Radiolab might just be the best thing on the air.

Feb. 21 2011 03:50 PM
Phoebe

This is the most romantic story I have ever heard. It renewed my faith in beauty, love, and truth.

Feb. 21 2011 11:05 AM
Emilie Oliver from Philadelphia

I'm sure I will keep this insightful story in the back of my mind. I spend each working day in two surgical intensive care units, where patients are disconnected from the world in various ways. A reminder of how important it is to find a way to access them, if possible.

Devoted listener since 2009.

Feb. 19 2011 07:38 PM
Mitch

I cried when I heard this story.... Prayers and a long life to Alan and Emilie.

Feb. 19 2011 09:47 AM
Alea from Toronto

I was rushing to school for a mid-term crit at art school and I was listening to this. I showed up to class right when I thought everyone had given up hope on you, Emilie. I barely made it through crit was on the verge of tears the whole time. When i got out, I finished the podcast and heard the rest of your story. I cried and cried. This story is extremely inspiring and I wish you all the best.

Feb. 18 2011 03:34 PM

I sat in the parking lot at work, captivated by your story. Alan, your determination is inspiring. Emilie, I hope you continue to recover and can continue your art in the future. I chipped in on your website, I'll say some prayers.

Feb. 18 2011 08:29 AM
Daniel J from Toronto, Canada

Emilie, I am so happy for you. I truly hope you regain your sight. But either way, know you were meant to survive. Alan is an amazing person, and you are both lucky to have each other. I hope you stay together!
About 16 years ago my father was nearly taken off of life support after a brain anyeurism. The nurses were only trying to get a response from him like every hour. But I asked if I could try, and I kept talking to him, and eventually got a response! I basically helped wake him up. :)
And now he is doing well and has a girlfriend who he met years later. Actually, today is Feb 18th, so he is turning 75 today!
The brain takes a while to heal, but things will improve eventually! :)
All the best.
-Daniel

Feb. 18 2011 02:51 AM
David Biedny from New York

That's really beautiful, I'm in tears. Thanks.

Feb. 17 2011 11:05 PM
Stephanie from Madison, WI

What an inspirational story. Emilie, I wish you the strength of a thousand people as you navigate this difficult journey back to recovery. My thoughts are also with the family and friends that are surrounding here.

I'd like to encourage everyone to visit Emilie's website listed above and consider a donation.

Feb. 16 2011 09:23 PM
Chris from Philadelphia

This is such a beautiful and touching story. I wish Emilie, her family and Alan all the strength in the world!

Feb. 16 2011 04:14 PM
Mike from Slidell, LA

I've been listening to RadioLab for a long long time, and I've never heard such a touching and beautiful story as this. Alan and Emily both truly give new meaning to the spirit of "hope and faith"! Thank you RadioLab. Thank you Alan and Emily!

Feb. 16 2011 11:08 AM
Lisa Hagen from NYC

This story took my breath away.
Thank you.

Feb. 16 2011 09:25 AM
Alyssa from NYC

Incredible. Echoing the sentiments of other commentators, this story is definitely one of the most touching segments I've heard on Radiolab and I'm currently tearing up at work. Greatest love story I've ever been told- BEST wishes to Emilie, Alan and her family.

Feb. 15 2011 01:21 PM
Student from NYC

Hey Emilie & Emilie's family. I was so shocked to hear about what happened....at first just as rumors... then through facebook, then through the fundraisers at school, the website and now this radio episode. It's such a relief to hear Emilie's voice, I wish you all the best. To see so much support for her in so many outlets is incredibly inspiring. People care- from all over the world! We love you, Emilie!

Feb. 15 2011 02:54 AM
susan

I wanted to thank you all. Your thoughts, feelings, tears and hope inspire Emilie to continue her climb to freedom and art.
While listening to the Radio Lab podcast, Emilie, Alan, Eric (her father) and I had tears, too. And we lived it! Radio Lab did an amazing production. An update:
Today, Em walked without the walker. Only 5 steps, but it is a beginning.

Feb. 14 2011 08:23 PM
Sam

There should have been a warning before this story to proceed with caution if driving, I had to pull over because I couldn't see through my tears. I've gotten teared up recounting the story since listening it, truly an amazing and wonderful miracle.

Feb. 14 2011 12:08 PM
Elizabeth from Indianapolis, IN

As a mother this is my worst nightmare. How do you know when to keep hope and when to let them move on? I hope I never face this and am very moved by this family. A amazing couple.

Feb. 14 2011 11:09 AM
Jared from Tokyo

like nothing i've ever heard, like everyone else shared here, the story brought me to tears in the middle of a public place and i couldn't help it. best of luck to the family and the recovery, please donate everyone!

Feb. 14 2011 08:32 AM
Ron Pitman from Indianapolis, IN

Amazing story, just amazing. This one got to me... Please donate

Feb. 13 2011 09:39 PM
Elaine

Love stories usually make me cry but this is like nothing else - I am destroyed. What a special love you have. And bravo, Radiolab.

Hope everyone will donate to Emilie's recovery: http://www.emiliegossiaux.com/

Feb. 13 2011 06:14 PM
Ashley Ivonne Limes from Philadelphia

Very inspiring, I'm happy to hear her determination and that of her family and boyfriend never waned.

Feb. 13 2011 05:26 PM
Daniel

I was moved to tears and that happens once a year max. All the best to Emilie and Alan
very inspiring.

Feb. 13 2011 02:32 PM
Steve from Brooklyn

Wow! Amazing.

Feb. 13 2011 12:07 AM
Mike from Chicago

Beautiful.

Feb. 12 2011 10:19 PM
Milolii Girl from Seattle

What a beautiful story! Like many others, it moved me to tears. Three cheers for Alan for not giving up and thinking of a way to reach Emily! Sending love to Alan, Emily and their families.

Feb. 12 2011 12:34 PM
Mark from Philadelphia

There's no crying on the commuter train...until I heard this.Very inspiring and beatuifully told. (I hope my daughter finds someone like Alan.)

All the best to Emilie and Alan

Feb. 11 2011 09:25 PM
Avid Runner from LA - GOLDS GYM

I was listening to this while running on a treadmill at the gym, and i started crying. Not something most people are used to seeing in a gym. It was embarrassing, but i kept running and running to hear the rest of it. Great, great story. Well told and well produced. You guys keep getting better.

Feb. 11 2011 08:35 PM
George from Edmonton, Canada

Another beautifully touching story from Radiolab. Thank you.

Feb. 10 2011 06:08 PM
zooter

crying as i write this.

thanks radiolab.

Feb. 10 2011 02:09 AM
Andrew from Washington, DC

I have to agree with a number of the commenters hear. I have never been so touched by a Radiolab episode. I was listening to this story at work. Big mistake! It is so heart touching. Please make a donation to Emilie at http://www.emiliegossiaux.com/

Feb. 09 2011 03:53 PM
Paul from California

This story had me in tears. Incredibly beautiful. Keep doing what you do guys. I wish the best for Alan and Emilie.

Feb. 09 2011 11:42 AM
Pauline Zalkin

I've always loved Radiolab, but this story epitomizes what's great about public radio and why as a society we must support these kinds of programs. I am struck by such an inspiring and heart warming story about two people who are both without a doubt one-of-a-kind souls. Amazing.

Feb. 07 2011 11:51 PM
bibi from Berkeley Springs

Just texted RadioLab a $10 donation and it was all because of THIS story. What an amazing tribute to true love. Beauty WILL save the world!

Feb. 06 2011 05:55 PM
EO

I don't think I've ever heard anything more beautiful or moving than Alan's recording of his and Emilie's "hand-tracing" exchange. It literally stopped me in my tracks. Wishing you well.

Feb. 05 2011 12:06 PM
Dave Land from San Jose

Like Emilie, people have given up radio for dead. Your show takes its hand, spells "I love u" into it, and it responds far beyond anyone's expectations.

Congratulations and blessings to Alan and Emilie. You show us how the power of loving persistence pays off.

Feb. 04 2011 11:57 AM
Beth

I was listening to this podcast at work and it made me cry! Thank you so much for all of your shows!

Feb. 04 2011 10:53 AM
Maggie from Oakland,CA

If you thought this was touching, an equally touching story of the healing power of love:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cqUAluDvuU4

Seven parts but well worth it.

Thanks for being messengers of love

Feb. 04 2011 04:25 AM
Bill Thoo from Sydney, Australia

Wow! I know you are deliberately pushing my emotional buttons, but wow...! That's how you tell a story that's worth telling! I became a fan after hearing you on ABC radio's Science Show, and you keep reminding why I'm a fan. Keep it up, guys.

Feb. 04 2011 02:36 AM
Maryann Hooper from FL

Thanks for another amazing show- this story had me choked up, touched, and inspired by the sheer power of love.

Feb. 03 2011 01:41 PM
Kerri from Sydney, Australia.

OMG what a wonderful show. Thankyou.

Feb. 03 2011 01:02 PM
Rebecca Severn from Brooklyn

My heart goes out to Emilie and Alan, just finished listening and am trying to pull myself together to go to work. I am so glad that she is doing better, what if she had been sent to a nursing home-- the idea is horrific. Such a relief that I didn't listen on the subway, I am just balling my eyes out and it could have been embarrassing. I can't wait to visit her site and donate.

If you ever see these, hang in there E and A! You two are inspirational.

Rebecca

Feb. 03 2011 12:52 PM
Derek from Norfolk, UK

I always listen to Radiolab, and just had to comment on this story which just blew me away. Fantastic - thank you !

Feb. 03 2011 11:52 AM
Ryan Baldwin from Omaha, NE

I hadn't listened to radiolab in over a year when I decided to download this episode and go shovel the driveway after the blizzard of 2011. About 45 minutes into clearing snow I found myself crying tears that froze to my face. Wonderfully produced, touching story. I hope everyone can find someone they feel that much devotion for.

Feb. 02 2011 09:21 PM
Farrah from Cleveland, OH

This story was so moving. Like everyone else I was in tears. Thank you so much for sharing this story Emilie, Alan, and Emilie's Family. Emilie you are an inspiration. You are so blessed to have such love surround you! I have been touched by the love as well. Thank you for sharing it with all of us. Best wishes for your recovery.

<3
Farrah

Feb. 02 2011 04:52 PM
Farrah from Cleveland, OH

This story was so moving. Like everyone else I was in tears. Thank you so much for sharing this story Emilie, Alan, and Emilie's Family. Emilie you are an inspiration. You are so blessed to have such love surround you! I have been touched by the love as well. Thank you for sharing it with all of us. Best wishes for your recovery.

<3
Farrah

Feb. 02 2011 04:48 PM
Annie from Austin, TX

What an unforgettable tale. Thank you so much for producing this story and to Alan and Emilie for sharing it. I can barely see the screen through these tears. Amazing....

Feb. 02 2011 01:09 PM
bryon from the internet

this pulled _me_ out from the wall

thank you

Feb. 02 2011 01:04 PM
Taufique from Dhaka, Bangladesh

I'm not that much into podcasts or radio stories. But, for a year or so, I'm getting more involved. My friend from Cologne, Throsten, recommended me to go through the story and it was mind-blowing! Hats off! What a strong, expertly-built and an emotional build up with good music and good sound editing! "A spontaneous overflow of powerful feeling!"- that's how much your story meant to me.

Feb. 02 2011 07:08 AM
David from Reno

Radio Lab did not mention it, but Emilie needs donations to pay her medical bills.

Click on the link provided to her website to participate.

If everyone who is touched by this story gives a little, then she will surely have enough.

Feb. 01 2011 07:16 PM
Sarah from Columbia, Missouri

I've been sitting here for a good 10 minutes trying to think of something to write between sobs and smiles. All I can come up with is Beautiful. Just beautiful. Thank you Emilie, Alan, and Radiolab.

Feb. 01 2011 06:21 PM
David from Chicago

Haunting story. Beautifully told. I was in tears. The part about "help me get out of the wall" will resonate with me for a while. Keep up the good work!

Feb. 01 2011 05:42 PM
Jen from Eugene, OR

What an amazing story! This is so beautiful, thanks for sharing it <3

Feb. 01 2011 05:17 PM
Sean from My Bursting Heart

Emilie, your spirit is greater than any challenge that lies ahead. I wish you unwavering strength and prosperity, and my heart is with you during this time of recovery.

Alan, I can’t stop thinking about your integrity and devotion. You are a leader, an inspiration. You are Love … and I thank you.

Tears of all kinds, but mostly of happiness and hope. Best to both of you.

xo

Feb. 01 2011 04:45 PM
Isti from London UK

What an incredible story!
My best, best wishes to Emilie for her recovery and a bright new future.

Feb. 01 2011 04:36 PM
Emery

I am totally blown away by this episode. Great work guys. Quite an amazing story. Who would have thought using touch to write words and communicate. And who would have thought there is a political regulated procedure side to human mental care.

Feb. 01 2011 04:08 PM
Craig from Chicago

Holy Cow! I was expecting to hear another great story with a bit of the RadioLab spice then I'm sitting at the kitchen table in tears.
Good luck Emilie and Alan.

Feb. 01 2011 02:56 PM
Seoul from New York/Canada

The body in all it's capacities is an amazing machine. The trauma it can go through. The stress it can take. I implore to any and everyone reading this; Your body will go through hell for you. Enjoy your life; respect your body and your mind. We will never fully understand it. You just have to have faith in it!

Amazing story!! Best wishes to Em and Alan.

Feb. 01 2011 01:09 PM
Thorsten from Cologne, Germany

I usually listen to the podcast of your show while commuting. Normally, I'll just turn my iPod off when I get home. With Emily's story, I couldn't just let it go. I sat down on my sofa at home and just kept listening to the hear the end. Wonderful. Moving. Amazing. Very well produced. Thank you.

Feb. 01 2011 12:59 PM
J. Todd Leffar

You guys knocked it out of the park with this one. It was expertly told, and I couldn't help but get drawn into it more and more as the story unfolded. It really felt like I was right there with Alan and Emily and her family through the whole ordeal. You obviously couldn't use Emily's voice until the very end, but it was still a genius move. I was hoping the whole time that she was going to come out of it, and then BAM -- she did. Beautiful.

Feb. 01 2011 12:47 PM
Caro from Paris

The story of Emilie and Alan was beautiful. When Alan was describing their last morning together before the accident, I could hear the love in his voice.

young love is beautiful.

Bon courage les deux!

Feb. 01 2011 07:55 AM
Mats from Norway

Radiolab should be banned!
It's horribel what you do to people. I was on the train, out in public: "Hmm, let's listen to some radiolab, thats a good idea..."
Then, Bam! I'm crying. Tears pouring. Damn you, you podcast narrators.

Feb. 01 2011 02:44 AM
Parthipan from Winnipeg

What a nice story. Love listening to radiolab at my lab!

Feb. 01 2011 12:18 AM
Tory Moeckel from Portland, OR

I was having a relaxing night. Just got home from class, had the house to myself... decided to listen to this episode and make some dinner before starting on homework. It wasn't long before i was in tears and leaning against the fridge. What a powerful story. Thank you for sharing it.

Feb. 01 2011 12:04 AM
Maren from CT

truly a unique story that could touch anyone who has ever experienced an inexplicable amount of love and support for another. Radiolab, you've done it again..

Jan. 31 2011 08:52 PM
Evan

I was a bit surprised they didn't mention this on the show but her family does need financial assistance for all the medical bills and rehabilitation. You can donate here http://www.danlangston.com/emilie/ if you are so inclined.

Jan. 31 2011 07:02 PM
Brandon

One of the most emotionally powerful stories I've ever listened to. I was overwhelmed by a tidal wave of emotion when Emilie began responding to Alan's questions. Truly a testament to the human spirit.

Jan. 31 2011 04:42 PM
Vanessa from Brooklyn, NY

That was one of the most powerful stories I have ever heard. Truly amazing. I wish the best to Emily and Alan. They are a reminder of what it means to never give up on someone you love.

Jan. 31 2011 03:51 PM
Shannon from Arizona

Unbelievably moving...moved enough to visit the site and write.

Jan. 31 2011 12:54 AM
Sid

This is great, and moving. Hope and love, these are the only things that matter now. I wish Emilie the best. Everyone is pulling for her.

Jan. 30 2011 11:34 PM
Casey from Chicago

This is the most amazing story I have ever heard on radiolab. Which obviously is saying a whole lot.

Jan. 30 2011 11:25 PM
Jordan from Tampa

I am 34 years old... I have not been moved to tears, since a death over 19 years ago. That was until today. An incredibly touching story.

Jan. 30 2011 04:46 PM
Peter from Indiana

You did it again Jad and Robert! Great work.

Jan. 30 2011 10:58 AM
Joe from Utah

This is absolutely one of the most moving stories I've ever heard on NPR. A beautiful story which was presented wonderfully.

Good job.

Jan. 30 2011 02:05 AM
Nathan from Portland, OR

Thanks for posting the link to the donation site. Best wishes to Emily and her family.

Jan. 29 2011 08:12 PM
dots

Another good episode. Love Radiolab.

Jan. 29 2011 05:35 PM
Jason Laws from Seattle WA

thank you God for your healing and your love!

Jan. 29 2011 04:18 PM
carmen from oakland, ca

this is such a beautiful story. thank you to the boyfriend & the the girlfriend for sharing

Jan. 29 2011 02:50 PM

Wow, I usually don't get choked up at a podcast, but really now! 22 years ago I was in a similar situation where I had an accident and was unresponsive for 3 days... until my family and friends all surrounded me and started talking to me and I woke up and asked 'Hey everybody, whats going on?'. Stories such as Emily and Alans are a true testament to the recovery process thru the Love and patience of those closest to you. Good luck guys.

as a side note: Alans communication with Emily reminds me of the movie 'Johnny Got His Gun' in the scene where the nurse writes on his chest with her finger.

Jan. 29 2011 10:55 AM

thanks to everyone involved for helping put the important things in perspective for the rest of us. the respective self-titling of "the BF" and "the GF" toward the end, in all adorability, made me smile the widest, hence helping hold back those salty ducts an extra few seconds.

Jan. 29 2011 04:39 AM
Was Once from San Francisco

I am one of these stories, when I was in a coma with brain damage caused by a Dr. error...they told my Mom and Family that I would never talk, walk, eat again based on the CAT Scans.My Mom prevented them from doing a tracheostomy, based on the fact that they were already seeing my determination(and I was working hard after seeing their worried faces). 5 weeks later I was out of ICU, 7 weeks walking out with a feeding tube. Still have brain damage and speech disability...but can eat. It was the love of my family and a night nurse Mom hired who was ex-Vietnam war nurse vet to keep me alive. While shaving and cleaning me he used to encourage me to first try a thumbs up...<i>got to start somewhere.</i> He talked to me like an adult, not like an invalid. He got the first letter of thanks as soon as I got home.

Jan. 29 2011 12:44 AM
Mallory from Portland, OR

Thank you so much for sharing your powerful story. So fascinating and wonderful to hear. I can't get over the statement Emilie said of "Get me out of the wall!" So moving and powerful - a testament to sticking with those you love and making it work.

Best of luck to you both, I know you will bring new and interesting perspectives to art!

Jan. 28 2011 10:20 PM
Rui from San Francisco

This was a truly heartwarming story...

Best of luck to Emilie and Alan.

Jan. 28 2011 09:39 PM
Sunny from LA

@Lukas from Florida & Session:

June: Barcarolle (G minor) by Tchaikovsky.

Jan. 28 2011 09:21 PM
Mark Yoshida

Great story. You should've saved this for Valentine's Day. Thx.

Jan. 28 2011 07:42 PM
Jen from Los Angeles, CA

I was listening to this story while hiking and it made me cry. A real life fairy tale! Thank you.

Jan. 28 2011 07:37 PM
Mei-Ling from San Francisco

So moving. Thank you Radiolab for sharing this powerful story. Blessings and love to Alan, Emilie, and family.

Jan. 28 2011 06:43 PM
Lauren from Brooklyn, NY

Hey all - if you go to Emilie's web site you can make a much needed donation.

Jan. 28 2011 05:28 PM
Allison from Brooklyn

I just wanted to leave a little note of support for Alan and Emilie. And thank you to Radiolab for sharing this amazing story.

Jan. 28 2011 04:51 PM
Nick from Florida

Radio Lab, you made me cry. I'm a grown man, but listening to this segment I was weeping like a small child. I only wish I could help out Emilie and Alan, their story touched me deeply.

Jan. 28 2011 03:46 PM
Molly from San Francisco

Wow - is all I can say. Bless you Alan, and speedy recovery to someone who is such a fighter, You rock Emilie!

Jan. 28 2011 02:32 PM
Eva from los angeles

I like to believe love can save us all. Alan and Emilie will forever live in my mind as a precious example of that improbable idea. My heart aches and leaps when I think of them. I hope the tears stop soon...
Please donate, if you can, to help with her medical and rehab.
http://www.emiliegossiaux.com/
Thank you Radiolab. I we are lucky to have you!

Jan. 28 2011 02:16 PM
michelle

Alan sounds like a wonderful guy, Emilie is very lucky to have found someone like that! A true love story... hoping & praying for a speedy recovery!

Jan. 28 2011 02:06 PM
ML from Utah

Crying (of course) but also thinking about what different kinds of communication might work with people I can't reach on all sorts of levels.

Jan. 28 2011 01:54 PM
Guinta from Detroit

WOW! A radio lab fan, this one will go down in the history books. You've gotten me through some long days in the past, but after this one... I'll be sure appreciate the day a little more.

Thanks Emilie and Alan for your story.

Jan. 28 2011 11:58 AM
Jolene from Tampa

Thank you so much for the work you do, this story was very moving. I, too, found myself with tears in my eyes. What an incredible story!

Jan. 28 2011 11:43 AM
Lukas from Florida

Absolutely loved this segment. As usual, fantastic editing. Could you please share what the music selections were, particularly the piano piece that plays over the phone recording of Emilie and Alan communicating?

Jan. 28 2011 10:58 AM
Elena from New York

Guys, I'm walking to work crying like a little baby; this is not right. What a beautiful story and as always beautifully told.

Jan. 28 2011 08:29 AM
Jesse Zylstra from Waterville, WA

This was such a moving story that is just so amazing I do not know what else to say. Thank you, Radiolab, for sharing it with us

Jan. 28 2011 02:04 AM
Ann from New Orleans

I was one of Emilie's teachers at the New Orleans Center for Creative Arts. Even as a high school student, Emily was an incredibly talented and perceptive artist. Even then, we knew she was destined for greatness. She also is a remarkable person. Please visit her fundraiser site (link above). You can purchase from etsy or just make a donation to help cover the extraordinary costs of Emilie's rehabilitation.

Jan. 28 2011 12:09 AM
Audrey from Brooklyn

I love radiolab for all sorts of reasons. This is one of them.

Truly one of the most moving stories I've ever heard. What an incredible testament to the power of love. Thank you, thank you, thank you.

(Just fyi, I wept while listening to this on the subway. Radiolab seems to have that effect on me sometimes. It's just a wee bit awkward ;-).

Jan. 27 2011 11:08 PM
Adhiti Bandlamudi from Acworth, Georgia

The Lost and Found podcast must be one of my favorite Radiolab podcasts ever! This story, however, meant more than a podcast segment to me. I literally cried wile listening to this story about Emilie and Alan. I was so moved by their love for each other. I wish them all the best. Their love will definitely continue through several lifetimes to come! I wish them all the happiness in the world!

Jan. 27 2011 09:48 PM
Emily from Brooklyn, NY

I love Radiolab and have listened to every episode... this segment is by far one of the most touching and memorable. I am amazed by Emilie and Alan and their love for each other. I hope that Emilie makes an incredible recovery.

Thank you, Radiolab. for stories like this!

Jan. 27 2011 08:34 PM
olivia

i couldn't stop thinking about emilie and her family after hearing this story.

as it turns out, emilie's family are asking for help to offset her medical bills and are accepting donations (through chipin) as well as selling off artwork (through etsy).

to help them, or for more info, please visit:
http://www.emiliegossiaux.com/

Jan. 27 2011 06:35 PM
opsin from UK

Yet another incredibly moving piece... I don't know how you keep doing it. Fascinating, heartbreaking, heartwarming and hopeful.

Jan. 27 2011 06:09 PM
Irene Rx from NY, NY

Such an incredibly moving story. What beautiful people Alan and Emilie are. I wish all the very best to them. Love is the answer.

Jan. 27 2011 05:40 PM
Julia

I also really loved the story. The part that got me was when he put her helmet on and took her bike outside the morning of the accident. Such a sweet story and so nice to hear her boyfriend is sticking by her side.

Jan. 27 2011 05:33 PM

One of the most beautiful stories I have ever heard. I love Radiolab.

Jan. 27 2011 04:29 PM
William from Miami Beach, FL

Wow!!! Usually it is This American Life that make me cry!!! Truly a beautiful story.

Jan. 27 2011 04:27 PM
Ryan from Minneapolis

What a wonderful story. I will give my daughter the biggest hug when she returns home from school today. Radiolab is the best. Thank you.

Jan. 27 2011 03:51 PM
Dawn from Pennsylvania

Such an AMAZING story! Gave me a heck of a good cry and made me hug my children extra hard. Best of luck to Emilie, Alan, and Susan!
Thanks, RadioLab!

Jan. 27 2011 03:24 PM

I didn't just leak a few tears, I got all the way to 'the ugly cry.' As a mother, imagining hearing my daughter speak after an accident like that, it was beyond words. Thank you to all at the RadioLab staff for sharing this story. So, so beautiful.

Jan. 27 2011 01:55 PM
Stu from Norfolk, VA

It was a mistake to listen to this right before heading to class. My students will wonder why my eyes are red.

Jan. 27 2011 01:09 PM
Stefka Villaveces from Athens, Georgia

Wow...I was making baklava for my local Farmers Market this morning and ended up crying all over it. (Not actually in it) I can't wait to share this story with other friends. Thanks, S.

Jan. 27 2011 12:13 PM
Brian

tears still streaming down my face. such a great segment.

Jan. 27 2011 11:08 AM
zebediah from Boston, MA

heart wrenching tale. I am left wondering about what it was in the way Emily looked at her boyfriend that she didn't like and how it is related (or not) to her eventual accident.

Jan. 27 2011 05:54 AM
kristin from zambia

i loveloveLOVE radiolab, and this episode was incredible. i'm especially intrigued by emilie and alan's story, so i followed the link to her website where i found you can help support her by shopping on etsy! Great stuff for a great cause. the link is http://www.etsy.com/teams/7101/help-emilie-gossiaux-team

Jan. 27 2011 05:10 AM
Gary from Vancouver Canada

All heroes - made me cry too. RadioLab turns it up a notch again!

Jan. 27 2011 01:16 AM
kris pelkey from michigan

beautiful.........................

Jan. 27 2011 12:06 AM
Robyn Suarez from Terrytown, LA

I have lived across the street from The Gossiaux's. I think that they are ALL wonderful, inspiring people. Emily is a living miracle. You know, when a person lives through a traumatic event like this, it is because God has a special plan for her. God bless them all. Beautiful family with love and devotion for their children. This, to me, is the definition of FAMILY :-) I am always here for you all.....

Jan. 26 2011 08:20 PM
Michael from Louisiana

"What is your name? Emilie! Let me spell it for you."

And just like that, tears were running down my face. I had to rush to a nearby restroom to hide and ride it out.
Thank you.

Jan. 26 2011 07:33 PM
P from Brooklyn

Amazing. I love how you used Alan's recorded footage.

Jan. 26 2011 07:23 PM
Nags

I was so moved by this story. Thank you so much for sharing it.

Jan. 26 2011 06:48 PM
Chris of Long Beach from SoCal

Emilie and Alan's story broke my heart and put it right back together again. I Love those two... big style.

Jan. 26 2011 05:25 PM
Kathryn from Michigan

Oh radiolab, (sniffle, sniffle)
You always do this to me.
Thanks for reminding me where I am.
I am here.

Jan. 26 2011 05:04 PM
Craig from Metairie, LA

Wow. What a great story about the power of love. Heartbreaking at first and heartwarming in the end. I listened with tears in my eyes.
Thank you Radiolab. I'm always entertained by your podcasts. Today I was blown away.

Jan. 26 2011 04:56 PM
Rufus from Houston, TX

This is a deeply moving story. Thank you.

Jan. 26 2011 04:48 PM
Emily from New York

Emilie, Alan, and Susan your story is moving and utterly amazing. The love that the three of you share is truely inspring.

Emilie, know that the Radiolab world is sending you good vibes and we hope that your recovery continues on its amazing trajectory.

Alan, your love and support of Emilie is beautiful.

Thank you all for sharing your story with us

Jan. 26 2011 04:48 PM
Alex from Florida

This is probably the most intense, emotional, and powerful story that I've ever heard on Radiolab. Amazing! Thank you to Emilie, Alan, and Susan for sharing with us.

Jan. 26 2011 04:30 PM
Orlando from Mcallen, TX

Great episode! I just started to listen to radiolab 3 weeks ago and its easily in my top 3.

Thank you for such good radio!

Jan. 26 2011 04:22 PM
Mel from Sacramento, CA

Time stopped as I listened to every word of this podcast. What a truly amazing story about a precious life and how much hope and intuition play in all of our lives.
It was superbly produced by the Radiolab team. I will continue to support your work and now Emile's as well. My sincere thank you for radio worth listening to.

Jan. 26 2011 03:02 PM
Ross from Bedford, TX

I have to agree with several of the above comments. There have been several stories from RadioLab that have touched me with wonder or even emotion, but this one literally left me with tears running down my face. Thank you Jad and Robert for bringing these bits of humanity into our lives, and thank you to Alan, Emilie, and Susan for sharing your story with us. I wish nothing but the best to you all!

Jan. 26 2011 02:08 PM
Tim from Illinois

I never get emotionally responsive to any stories. However this one, I found myself listening intently and actually crying while at work. I think Some people just have a "light", for lack of what else to call it, that shines on them all the time. I think Emilie is one of these people. I found it interesting that at one point her mother said all the bad things always seemed to happen to Emilie. I have to disagree. I never really fully understood what they meant when people would say, "It's all about how you look at things". After hearing this story, I think I finally get it. I wish the best for Emilie and and her life, and her artwork. I know she can do it.

Jan. 26 2011 01:53 PM
Tim from Illinois

I never get emotionally responsive to any stories. However this one, I found myself listening intently and actually crying while at work. I think Some people just have a "light", for lack of what else to call it, that shines on them all the time. I think Emilie is one of these people. I found it interesting that at one point her mother said all the bad things always seemed to happen to Emilie. I have to disagree. I never really fully understood what they meant when people would say, "It's all about how you look at things". After hearing this story, I think I finally get it. I wish the best for Emilie and and her life, and her artwork. I know she can do it.

Jan. 26 2011 01:52 PM
meg from Brooklyn, New York

Just made a contribution on Emilie's site. Heartbreaking turned heartwarming story. Best of luck to Emilie and Alan!! xo

Jan. 26 2011 01:51 PM
Jones from Cincinnati

What a gem of a story.

Jan. 26 2011 12:48 PM
LJ from Omaha

Brian, I'm crying at work, too!!

Another wonderful episode!! I love this show soooo much :)

Jan. 26 2011 12:45 PM
Brian from Lincoln

Thanks for getting me all misty eyed while at work.

Jan. 26 2011 12:07 PM
Max from DC

This is heartwrenchingly beautiful. Best wishes to Emily and Alan. We're all rooting for you.

Jan. 26 2011 11:45 AM
Session

What is the song that plays when she first begins to understand?

Jan. 26 2011 10:34 AM
nick

cried like a baby

Jan. 26 2011 09:44 AM
Justin from st paul

this is such an amazing story. i wish nothing but the absolute best for her.

Jan. 25 2011 10:29 PM
Mintie from Chicago

Amazing story! Best of luck to Emilie and Alan and thank you for sharing your story.

Jan. 25 2011 09:26 PM
Flora

I've listened to Radiolab stories that have choked me up, but never have I heard one like this before. This is such a beautiful story of hope, love, and survival. I wish the best for Emilie and Alan.

Jan. 25 2011 09:18 PM

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