An Army Ranger doing what he “was raised to do” has captured the heart of the nation he serves.
Lt. Col. Robert Risdon and a friend stopped at a Taco Bell in Greenville, Ala., on Tuesday for a bite to eat when Risdon noticed two young boys, a 9-year-old and a 12-year-old, selling “homemade baked goods,” according to ABC News.
The two boys asked Risdon, a deputy commander for the Airborne and Ranger Training Brigade at Fort Benning, Ga., if he was interested in buying a treat, but the soldier didn’t have any cash on him.
“They were in the store trying to continue to sell,” Risdon told ABC affiliate WTVM. “I noticed they had just gotten out of the rain, they were both soaking wet.”
And that’s when he decided to buy them dinner instead.
Risdon’s generosity was captured on video by his friend, Jason Gibson, who later posted it on Facebook.
“I was in a Taco Bell tonight when two kids came in trying to sell home-made desserts for money,” he wrote. “I overheard a soldier ask the kids if they were hungry and told them to follow him to the counter, he would buy them dinner.”
“I heard the little one say I want to be just like [you] when I grow up and saluted him,” Gibson added.
“It seemed like a very small gesture I could do for two kids that were trying to make some money in the rain on a school night,” the Ranger told ABC News afterwards. “So, absolutely it was my duty to at least get them something to eat.”
Turns out, the boy are brothers and “great kids,” according to Risdon. “Super respectful.”
“I thought it was amazing,” he said. “A 9-year-old boy is coming up to me and saying you protect us. You take care of us… They have inspired me as much as I have made them feel good by filling their bellies a little bit.”