I am writing to restate a "thank you" I gave years ago, but that I still say to this day.
I was a musician playing in Pittsburgh, and our group was staying with friends in Squirrel Hill. Late at night, I left one of my guitars in its case out on the street -- just forgot it. I woke up the next morning and it was gone.
I put up signs around the neighborhood, and a neighbor said they had seen the newspaper delivery person pick up the guitar, probably thinking it was a freebie.
The next morning I waited outside, met the delivery person and asked about the guitar. He did not speak much English, but he nodded and said "Wait." He came back a few minutes later with the guitar. I thanked him profusely. He would not accept the money I offered him for its return.
Even though I thanked him years ago in person, I wanted to write this public thank you. Though that random act of kindness occurred years ago, I still remember every Thanksgiving how grateful I am to the neighbors and newspaper delivery person who helped me find something so dear to me.
On Thanksgiving Day, we were treated by our son and daughter-in-law to a fantastic dinner at the Four Points by Sheraton in Cranberry.
We decided to leave by the side door, close to the parking lot. Our son went ahead to retrieve the car. I had my cane in one hand and was holding onto my husband's arm. The next thing I knew, we were both prone on the steps. He thought there were two steps, but the number was three.
Immediately our "first responders" (helpful bystanders) were at our sides. A man and a girl were at my side, with him asking if I was all right and whether I hit my head. The answer to his questions were "yes" and "no." Each one took an arm of mine, and once again I was upright.
Our daughter-in-law and a young man got my husband to his feet. My rescuer asked if he could help us to our car, and then our son drove up, unaware of all the chaos.
Names were not taken, but thanks were surely said. We hope that our three first responders read this, as we will be eternally grateful to them. They made our Thanksgiving Day truly thankful.
Black Friday arrived with aches and stiffness, but no broken bones.
On Nov. 15 I was mugged walking home from the bus stop after work.
A young kid (he looked to be around 14) came up behind me and grabbed my purse, really ruining my day. I had to go to the expense of a new cellphone, new car remote and key and new locks for my townhouse.
I was in a real funk until the following Saturday afternoon, when my doorbell rang. A father with his three young children were at the door with my stolen driver's license! The father said his daughter found the license and wanted to be sure it was returned to me. They walked from where the license was found all the way to my house to give it back to me.
I bet the father has taught his children a lesson they will never forget. I was too shocked and grateful to get their names, but I hope they see this post and know they did the right thing and have a fantastic father.
Has someone done you right? Send your Random Act of Kindness to firstname.lastname@example.org, or write to Portfolio, Post-Gazette, 34 Blvd. of the Allies, Pittsburgh, PA 15222.