One man in the UK is sharing a story that will melt even the coldest of hearts (Watch out Mr. Grinch!). It is the story of selfless love, unerring kindness, and an unmistakable commentary on how one individual’s actions can impact the lives of others in the most profound of ways.
Owen Williams took to Twitter to let the world in on a beautiful thing that happened to his family - something that came out of grief and sadness - in his little corner of the globe. In sharing the incredible story of Ken Watson, Williams hopes to inspire hope and goodwill in everyone, no matter where they live.
“Our elderly neighbour passed away recently. His daughter popped round a few moments ago clutching a large plastic sack. In the sack were all the Christmas presents he’d bought for *our* daughter for the next thirteen years. 😢”
“My wife and I think it might make a nice Christmas tradition to give our daughter 'a present from Ken' for the next 14 years.
"Issue is, we really have to open them now. Nobody wants to give a fifteen-year-old Duplo!”
The dilemma has caused Williams to ask Twitter users for their opinion:
Williams tells a little about the extraordinary man who was so much more than ‘the old guy next door.’
“There’s some press interest in this story, so let me tell you a bit about the man:
Ken was a former salvage diver, seaman, carpenter, baker...
"The first time I met him, he was bouncing a 20ft ladder across the face of his house.
"He was on top.
"He was 83 at the time.”
It won’t be just Williams and his daughter who are aching over Ken’s loss. The family dog is also devastated;
“Our dog loved him. I mean, genuine visceral love. It was mainly due to the chocolate digestive biscuits he gave her on first meeting. She’d scream whenever she saw him. Really scream. Like a banshee. He’d call her ‘my darling’ and ‘sweetheart’.”
Alone since his wife died, Mr. Watson experienced loneliness made up for, in part, by the lovely family next door.
"After my wife had passed away I took a long time to settle. There’s a space around me. I still hear her voice and speak to her."
Faced with such an enormous number of gifts for a two-year-old, Williams admits that he and his wife could not resist the temptation: They broke down and opened one of the gifts:
Twitter followers had a lot to say about this extraordinary gesture.
"I think, besides those wrapped presents, your neighbor left behind the most wonderful story for you to share with your daughter when she’s a little older....that, of a thoughtful gentleman with a big heart, who will leave behind a truly loving memory that will keep on giving.”
Amen! That little girl has been loved more than she will ever know By someone whom she will never remember first-hand. But the legacy he left behind for her is sure to stir sweet memories as she grows and begins to discover what ‘selfless giving’ is all about.