Good samaritans keep showing up, from Cobb to California
by Don McKee
February 19, 2014 04:00 AM | 1105 views | 0 0 comments | 30 30 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Don McKee
Don McKee

Let’s take a good news break. 1. Close to home, the Tom Gernatt family in west Cobb has received an outpouring of help after an early Sunday morning fire destroyed their home and cars. People have provided clothing, vehicles, food and a place to stay. The Gernatt’s church took up an offering. Two vehicles were loaned, thanks to a friend who is a principal at a dealership. On Sunday morning, a stranger going to church saw the scene of destruction and returned with coffee and cinnamon rolls. Other strangers and firefighters stopped and prayed with the family. “I had people handing me gift cards and I don’t even know who they are,” Gernatt said.

2. The town of Ojai in California is the setting for an unexpected act of kindness toward a five-year-old autistic boy fascinated by garbage trucks. When it’s trash day every week, little Daniel Mulligan waits with his parents, watching for the garbage truck. He stands in the yard and waves at the driver.

“We will literally be waiting outside for hours on trash day because he hears the truck in the neighborhood and can’t focus on anything else,” his mother told ABC News. The boy’s interest in the garbage truck was rewarded recently when the driver, Manuel Sanchez, got out of his truck and handed Daniel a big bag. Inside was a toy garbage truck. Even more remarkable, it was the same as the one Daniel got for Christmas but broke accidentally that same day.

The video of Daniel getting his present went viral on the Internet. His mom, Robin Newberger, has created a Facebook page, “The Gift,” for other parents with autistic children to share their heartwarming stories. The good news continued when the driver’s employer, a family-owned business, rewarded him with a restaurant gift certificate. A spokeswoman said Sanchez did the good deed on his own, adding: “We’re so proud of him.”

3. Winter storms bring out the best in people as the recent snow-jam in metro Atlanta demonstrated. Since then more stories of Good Samaritans have come out of the wintry blasts in the Northeast, notably after a huge chain-reaction pileup of about 100 autos and dozens of tractor-trailers on the icy Pennsylvania Turnpike left 30 persons injured and shut down the highway for most of a day. Stranded commuters near an overpass “were shocked to look up and see Good Samaritans coming from all directions bringing pizza, burgers, pretzels, water, even chocolate,” CBS News reported.

“We saw people climbing down hills, carrying food on their shoulders to people who are stuck here,” said one commuter who left her stranded auto and, even though she was six months pregnant, walked up the overpass to bring back food for others around her vehicle.

“We’re all just making good of a bad situation,” she said. Such things happen somewhere every day. So if the situation is bad, as the lady said, just make good out of it.

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