January 12, 2010
My name is Erica F. I am a Flight Attendant for US Airways. This morning on a flight from Charlotte, NC to Phoenix, AZ I witnessed an amazing transformation not only in me but also in many of the passengers on board our flight. I was approached by our First Class flight attendant while I was preparing the accounting machine for in-flight sales. She said that a kind First Class passenger wanted to purchase food and drinks for the military personnel boarding our flight. I was stunned; the group was much larger than I initially thought it was—approximately 30 to 35 members.
As we proceeded with our service, we found that several people throughout the rest of the plane were offering to buy the service men and women something as well! I had to tell them that someone in First Class had already beaten them to it! When it came time to close out our sales I approached the kind gentlemen and commented, “So, I understand you’re the lucky man who gets this bill!” He quickly reached for his wallet and retrieved a credit card. I joked with him about the enormous amount! Then I showed him the low figure. It was amazing how low it was from both of our original guesstimate.
I tore off the receipt and with it I handed him a few thank you notes from the servicemen and women including one from myself. In my note I explained that every person that learned of his kind gesture expressed gratitude, not just the service personnel but the other passengers on the plane as well. I also expressed my thankfulness to him for reminding me of one thing: my biggest lesson in life. Through my mother’s example I was encouraged to be driven by my heart. And to be kind regardless of what little we had monetarily. (Sadly, it was a heart attack that ended her life not long ago.) As we started our decent, I turned to head to the aft of the aircraft to complete my duties when he got my attention. “Excuse me, Erica.” He stood up, turned to look at me, “I just want to say thank you.” He said. I had a hard time keeping a tear from rolling down my cheek. “ME? Thank me?” I offered a big hug and said again…“Thanks for your kindness, sir.”
I had boarded the flight tired from a long trip and homesick for my family. It was clear to me and my crew and several passengers that it wasn’t the money that made a huge difference on this flight. It was the kind gesture of appreciation from a stranger with a giving heart that touched us all and reached far across our country this given day.
Submitted by Anonymous
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