Being a parent is one of the most rewarding experiences in life. It is also known to be one of the most difficult. For many parents, resources for child-rearing always seem to be fleeting - and when you’re a single parent, the reality of meager means is magnified.
When a single dad and his ten-year-old daughter moved from Oklahoma to Colorado after losing everything, times were tough. James, the father, had just lost his job and a successful life in his small town, and he had begun to feel hopeless. With a car, gas money, and a couple bags of food, the father-daughter pair headed out in hopes of finding a new opportunity. They money got them as far as Colorado.
James had decided that a life in Colorado seemed promising enough for his little family, so he enrolled his daughter in school while he looked for jobs. In the meantime, the two still hadn’t found a place to live, so they were forced to live in their car. Shortly after school started, however, their car and the only shelter they had, died. James began to feel hopeless, but he knew that he couldn’t let his daughter see his despair.
James continued on as if all was well. He focused on positivity and joy, making sure that his little girl’s days always felt bright. In the morning, he would walk her to school and the two of them would laugh as they remembered memories from Oklahoma. When James got to his daughter’s school, he would kiss her goodbye, watch her go in, and then walk back to his car.
One day in school, the little girl had an assignment to draw a picture of her home. While everyone else was drawing houses with their families and pets, the little girl drew “home” as she knew it; she drew her car.
When her teacher saw the drawing, she did some investigating and learned that the little girl and her dad were, in fact, living in a car. She called the police to see if there was anything further she could do about it.
When police got word of this concern, they tracked down the car that James and her daughter were living in. After a day of job-searching, James walked home to his car and saw officers peering into his vehicle. “What’s going on, Officer?” James asked anxiously? The officer turned around, concerned and asked: “Are you living here, sir?”
James explained the situation. He was embarrassed to share the truth. That’s when the officer made a couple of calls. Before James could do much more, a tow truck arrived. The officer had worked out a deal with a local mechanic for James’ car to be worked on for free! The mechanic did the work free of charge simply because “Everyone deserves to be taken care of.”
James was overwhelmed. He had been so down-on-his-luck that this kind of compassion and service had him at a loss for words. He said, “I--- I don’t even know what to say. This is totally unexpected. I am shocked.”
In addition to the free maintenance, James and his daughter were given a room at one of the local shelters and James was set-up with several job interviews, organized by the shelter. After the investment that the police officer and mechanic had made in him, he feels confident in the future. We are so grateful for the officer and mechanic that went above-and-beyond. Thank you, both, for your service!