Awesome “yellow shirt guys” to the rescue
Today the front page of the Dongguan Times features headshots of five men, along with the headline: “You’re awesome!” The subheading explains that, in the midst of their busy lives, all these men had spontaneously come together for the occasion of saving a child. The largest picture has a caption over it that reads, “We found ‘yellow shirt guy’!”
“Yellow shirt guy” turns out to be one Yang Yihua, a 33 year-old man from Sichuan province who used to be a member of the armed police and now works as a security guard. His wife has had polio since childhood, and he was taking her to the doctor on July 8 when he saw a four-year-old girl had fallen off the balcony of her second story apartment and was dangling precariously, about to fall. Others were gathering below her, holding out blankets and mattresses to try to cushion her fall, but Yang grabbed a ladder and quickly climbed up it to rescue her. He was wearing red shorts and a yellow t-shirt at the time, and that’s how he came to be known as “yellow shirt guy.”
The newspaper dedicates pages three to five to this story, and goes into depth about Yang’s personal life as well as details about four other men who helped rescue the little girl, all of whom are labelled “yellow shirt guys.” The article also provides an in-depth explanation of how the little girl came to fall off the balcony in the first place. It seems she was home alone with her mother and took advantage of her mother watching TV to run out onto the balcony and subsequently fall off.
Among the “yellow shirt guys,” the one who held out the blanket is a 53-year-old pipe factory worker from Hunan; the one who held the ladder is 47 and also from Hunan; another ladder-holder is 58 and works in construction; the last one is 44, from Yongzhou, and works in waste collection as well as owning a grocery store. The article describing these men has the following heading: “They come from across the country, some are acquaintances, some are strangers. They live in rented houses, are migrant workers, work in waste collection, or are recently unemployed. But they all spontaneously came together to save people. These ‘yellow shirt guys’ are the most beautiful group.”
Also on the front page, a headline announces that the price of oil and gas in China has fallen again. This was the top story today in most newspapers across the country.