An 18-year-old Syran refugee is being hailed as a hero after he saved a toddler who was teetering on the edge of a rooftop.

Khalid Tabateb and his father were driving through Hamilton in Ontario, Canada earlier this month when his heart froze at the sight of a little boy in a diaper wandering precariously along the second-story ledge of a building.

The toddler had woken up from a nap and climbed through the window out onto the small rooftop. Neighbors and pedestrians had gathered underneath the ledge to catch the child in case he fell.

Khalid was determined to help, and he yelled at his father to stop the car.

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“My dad parked the car and said ‘If you can help him go help him,’” Khalid told CBC through his older sister, who acted as an interpreter. “I was scared. I didn’t want this little guy to go and die. I didn’t want to just watch.”

Without hesitation, the young migrant ran up to the house and started pounding on the doors in hopes that the parents were home – they were not.

Khalid then broke through the screen of a first-floor window, climbed into the house, ran to the toddler’s room and pulled the boy back inside.

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The 18-year-old has been praised for his actions – although this is not the first time that he has saved a life. When he and his father were living in war-torn Syria, they both brought a young boy to safety after he was caught in gunfire.

“He loves to help people,” Khalid’s sister told CBC. “He’s so brave. The whole family — we’re so proud of him.”

Though the family initially moved to Jordan to escape the war, they eventually fled to Canada in 2014, and community members say that the family has settled in wonderfully.

(WATCH the quick clip below below)

Save Your Friends From Negativity And Share This Sweet StoryPhoto by CBC


  1. I’m happy that this man was brave enough to do this, but wouldn’t anyone have the decency to do such a thing, the bravery? Do we have to point out that he is a Syrian refugee, and why? To emphasize his nationality and status is to deflect from the point of the story: doing what is RIGHT, whether you are black, white, blue, purple, yellow, on a work visa, traveling from overseas, just about to be deported, etc.

    • Hi there,

      The reason why we mention that he is a Syrian refugee is to emphasize exactly what you said: no matter where this person is from, they are capable of bravery and compassion. Since there are so many negative stereotypes towards Syrian refugees, this story helps to counterbalance those stereotypes by showing that ethnicity and visa statuses are not indicative of someone’s character!

      Hopes this helps.

  2. I respectfully disagree. In order to eradicate stereotypes, we, as a nation, need to realize and emphasize now more than ever, that we have the freedom as human beings to choose what is good, and act upon it.
    This is our greatest power, and is required of all of us.

    Therefore, to publish stories like this, or even further, for the sake of argument, to approach a Syrian refugee, and say: “I see that you have done something altruistic” in order to deflect from crimes other Syrians have done is to condescend to him in the most inhumane way possible.

    I said it before, and you deleted the comment before, but this convoluted notion that we pander to good people because of their color is precisely what Martin Luther King would have detested as he led the Civil Rights Movement. Can you imagine MLK promoting the philosophy that in order to “prove” that the black man was WORTHY would require constant commentary on his actions qua black man, and not his actions simply qua “human being”? I believe he would have shuddered at such pompous condescension, as much as he shuddered at the horrors of segregation and slavery.

  3. You have devolved into twisting our words and our intentions, and are fabricating some awful outcome of the fact that we pointed out he was Syrian.

    Believe what you want about MLK, but he certainly wouldn’t have “shuddered at such pompous condescension” — because it is not that, at all.

    Are you a racial minority? Do you know what it’s like to be Muslim, Syrian, or black in some communities in this world? BECAUSE of the stereotypes, we do our part to point to the good in such groups.

    Please stop posting on our website. If you disagree with our intent to break the negative stereotypes people have about entire races or groups of people, go read someone else’s stories.

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