Opinion

Stubborn 21-year-old woman humbled by encounter with disabled vet

The heartwarming story of a young woman’s act of kindness for a disabled veteran is going viral.

Morgan Wheeler, 21, was pulling out of a West Virginia Walmart parking lot when a man in a wheelchair crossed in front of her, waving apologetically for the delay.

Photo via Facebook.
Photo via Facebook.

Rather than being angry, Wheeler got out of her car and went over to the man whom she said was missing his right leg and looked like he was wearing government issued boots.

She asked if she could help him with grocery shopping but the veteran, being proud, refused.

Photo via Facebook.
Photo via Facebook.

Wheeler, however, was undeterred according to her post:

Me, being as stubborn as I am, insisted and proceeded to push him and tell him a little about myself. He interrupted me and said that he only needed help to the door, to which I picked up where I had left off before he interrupted me.

I told him about Fayetteville, and my horses, and my nephews (I had parked a good ways away from the doors). And when I reached the doors, I continued to push him and talk. We reached the produce area and I asked him to tell me about himself. He reluctantly looked at me and began telling me that he lived in Sod- Lincoln County, and that he just recently lost his wife. I asked him if he was a veteran, to which he replied that he was- but with pain on his face, so I changed the subject and asked if he had made a shopping list.

He handed me a list with only four things on it: peanut butter, soup, bread, and bananas. So we began shopping and I continued to talk… hard to believe- I know. Once we had gotten the items he needed, I asked if he needed the essentials: milk, eggs, butter. He told me that he might not make it home, without them going bad. So I questioned how he got to the store. He told me that he did what he was doing in the parking lot until he got to 119 and then hitch hiked with a trucker to the parking lot. So I called a taxi for him and grabbed the essentials plus a few other things and put them in the cart.

After placing a gallon of milk in his cart he was crying. People were passing by us, looking sideways at him. I knelt down and asked him what was wrong and he replied, that I “was doing far too much for an old man that I barely knew.”

I told him that where I am from, and from the family I was raised in, we help one another, no matter the task and that I had never met a stranger. I also told him that he deserved everything I was doing for him because he fought for my freedom and sacrificed so much. We made it to the check out line and I paid for his groceries, against his request. When we got outside, we waited for the taxi together. He thanked me over and over again and appeared- to me- to have been in a much better mood than when I found him.

When the taxi arrived, I helped him load his groceries and wheelchair into the taxi and asked the driver to take him home and help him into his house with his groceries. I gave him the only cash I had on me- $44, also against his will. I told him thank you for his service before closing the door. Tears formed again and he thanked me one last time and said, “God bless you.”

Wheeler said she was humbled by the experience and cried as well when she returned to her car.

The story has been shared more than 300,000 times since Wheeler first posted it on her page two weeks ago.

Carmine Sabia

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