Sorry for the novel but this story needed to be told. . . This morning my heart shattered, I was running a few errands with my boys, and as we were laughing and singing walking back to our car Gabriel suddenly stopped and asked: “Mommy what’s that??” When I turned to look my eyes instantly began to tear, and I told him “That gentleman is a hero baby!” There in front of me was a double amputee USA veteran in a wheelchair digging through a trash can looking for something to eat. He wasn’t holding a sign asking for money; he wasn’t bothering the people entering or leaving the store, he was hoping he wouldn’t be noticed digging through the trash. As I approached him, he was trying to pretend that he was throwing trash away. I asked him if I could buy him breakfast and a few groceries. His response had me go from teary eyes to full on waterfalls. “No thank you, ma’am, I can’t put you out like that but thank you.” At the very moment, Gabriel says to him “Hi gentleman hero!” Now we were both in tears and I told him I insisted and I wasn’t leaving him hungry. I took Ralph to breakfast where he told stories of “the good old days, ” and interacted with the boys, and he smiled and had tears in his eyes the entire time and said that his own children don’t even take the time to spend with him.
After breakfast, I told him we were going to go get a few grocery items, and his response broke my heart even more… “I appreciate the offer sweetheart but I don’t want your money to go to waste I don’t have anywhere to put it, I’m homeless staying shelter to shelter.” I bust my ass 6 days a week to provide for my boys and I and by no means can I afford to just spend money on hotel rooms for strangers, but Ralph touched my heart. I told him we were going to get groceries and I make sure he has a place to put them. He was very modest about what he picked out and I told him to pick out $50 worth of groceries, while he was doing that I called my cousin who manages a hotel and the hotel rallied together and got a room for Ralph for a week and some of the employees were going to see if they could get some clothes together for him. When I dropped him off, I gave him a hug and thanked him for his selfless years of service, and Gabriel gave him a hug and said “bye bye gentleman hero!” I’m sharing this novel story for recognition or likes. . . I’m sharing it because as a society we are often selfish and self –centered and focused on meaningless things such as a red coffee cup or what the Kardashians are up to. With all of that being THANK YOU from the bottom of my heart to all the men and women who have served and continued to serve our country selflessly. In the words of Gabriel “Thank you hero gentlemen and women!”
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