It was a bitter cold winter night, snow falling lightly, a dim silence in the air that gave off a tranquil sense of peacefulness. I was only 10 years old and had a pee-wee hockey game up in Manchester, New Hampshire, 40 minutes away from my home. Unfortunately, my New England-born father was working late that night and my Southern-peach mother (who is terrified of snow) had to drive me. On the way up the snow began to thicken, the winds picked up, and mother became nervous. Fortunately we arrived at the game safely.
It was a great game and my team came out victorious, but the feeling of victory and happiness soon turned to fear. When I left the ice rink I was the last one out and it was around 10 o’clock. My mother and I approached the exit door and through the window all we could see were white snowflakes falling harder and faster every second.
It had already accumulated up to about 9″ and my mother’s little Toyota Corolla was covered in a pile of snow. I could see the dread in mother’s face as we moved toward the car. “You have a shovel right?” I asked.
“Umm…. I think so,” she replied.
We popped open the trunk, looked inside, and turned to each other in disappointment as we realized there was no shovel in the car. I did what I could using my hockey stick to clear off the car, but there was no way our little Toyota was about to drive through over half a foot of snow. I tried keeping my mother as calm as I could, but when she went to turn on the car, the silence of a dead battery was deafening to us. Stranded in the parking lot. In a panic, she continued turning the ignition in hopes that a sudden jolt of energy would start it up. It wasn’t working, and now it was my mom and I in a cold little Toyota Corolla, stuck in an empty parking lot, 40 minutes away from home.
After what seemed like eternity a light appeared in the parking lot. Suddenly a massive red pickup truck emerged out of the white flakes that filled the sky. Yet again my mother and I turned to each other, only it was not a feeling of trepidation, but a sense of relief. The man in the red truck plowed through the thick snow and made his way toward us. “You guys stuck?” he asked.
“Yeah, and my car won’t start,” replied my mother.
He pulled his truck around to the front of our car, then hopped out with two cables in one hand and a shovel in the other. “Here you go chief,” he said as he tossed the shovel in my direction. Maybe it was me wanting to help save my mom, or perhaps I just wanted to impress the guy by showing him I was strong and tough, but whatever it was it helped me dig out my car like a mad man. While I was shoveling, the man jump-started our car. I returned the shovel to him and said thanks.
He replied politely, “You’re welcome chief. Take care of your mom now, OK?”
What a nice guy I thought, to help us in the middle of a snowstorm asking for nothing in return. What a chivalrous act of generosity and hope. He was truly our knight in shining armor.
— Brian Bond, Massachusets
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