An eight-year-old boy who acted beyond his years decided to pay it forward to a soldier he had just met after he discovered a small amount of money in the parking lot of a restaurant.
Eight-year-old Myles Eckert and his family had gone to eat at a Cracker Barrel restaurant in Toledo. On his way into the restaurant, Myles discovered a $20 bill in the parking lot.
Myles said at first he was going use the money to buy a video game, but that all changed when he saw a soldier in uniform.
Myles proceeded to wrapped the $20 bill inside of a post-it note he wrote a message on and gave it to Lt. Col. Frank Dailey. The note read:
“Dear Soldier, my dad was a soldier. He’s in heaven now. I found this $20 in the parking lot when we got here. We like to pay it forward in my family. It’s your lucky day! Thank you for your service. Myles Eckert, a gold star kid.”
Lt. Col. Dailey was very moved by the gesture. He said that the gift he received from Myles is much bigger than just the $20, which, by the way, he says he has already paid forward to someone else. He says he continues to look at Myles green post-it note every day, because it serves as a reminder for him to take life in a new direction.
It turns out that Myles father, Army Sgt. Andy Eckert, had been killed in Iraq just five weeks after Myles was born. All Myles knows about his father has come from the memories of others – he also has his dad’s dog tags and wedding ring.
Myles imagines that his dad would enjoy a good story, because following the encounter at the restaurant, he requested that his mother stop by his father’s grave so he could see him – but he wanted to go alone. She snapped a photo from the car of her son giving a hug to his dad’s headstone.
- Kelly Urich