May Abboud Melki and her husband will always be grateful they weren’t home when an explosion over a mile away tore through it. On August 4, a deadly explosion rocked Beirut, Lebanon, causing widespread destruction across the city. Thousands were injured, over 100 people lost their lives, and countless others were left homeless. While May’s house was left standing, it was seriously damaged, and her husband’s store was destroyed. Still, she refused to give up!
When the 79-year-old woman stepped into her home of 60 years a day later, she was heartbroken. Broken glass and bricks littered the floor, much of the furniture was ruined, and there were holes in the walls. Still, she felt hopeful when she saw that her piano, a wedding gift from her father, was untouched. That’s when she sat down and began to play.
As volunteers worked to clean up the house, she played “Auld Lang Syne” and then some Arabic songs. “She pushed through the pain and tried to have a few moments of peace,” her granddaughter, May-Lee Melki, said. “To see her lean into her faith, lean into God was something that was a strong message to her community and our family immediately.”
Her resilience with the encouraging music inspired her loved ones and thousands of people around the world! May-Lee shared a video of the powerful moment on Facebook, and it quickly went viral. It isn’t hard to see why! In May-Lee’s words, it “was able to express a symbol of hope and peace among all of the despair.”