“During Hurricane Sandy, our home flooded and we lost most of our belongings. To help my two kids regain some normalcy, I took them to Walmart to buy a couple of toys. As we walked in, I helped an elderly man wrench a cart from the stack—he thanked me, then politely asked how we’d fared during the storm. I told him about the flood and he said, ‘I’m replacing some things for my grandkids. Will you help me pick out a few things?’
“We happily browsed the aisles filling his cart with food, toys and clothes. As we parted ways at the checkout, he thanked us with a wink. I bought my kids one toy apiece, and as we were leaving the store, a woman from customer service stopped me to say I’d forgotten my cart. I told her it wasn’t mine, but she insisted and wheeled the basket over—it was everything we’d chosen for the man’s grandkids! In tears, I read the note scribbled on the gift receipt: ‘Thanks for helping an old man find joy.’”
—Maggie Jacobs, 36, Little Ferry, NJ
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