Editor’s Note: Our readers responded strongly to this story when it originally ran; we’re reposting it here in case you missed it.
Flights are generally memorable because they go so well or so poorly — but one family whose recent trip was heartbreaking for one family member is now remembering the trip fondly, thanks to one kind man in particular.
Mom Lauren, Dad Brian and their kids Lena and James had just gotten stateside after a visit to Norway. They endured a 36-hour layover in New York until finally it was time to hop on a flight to their home state, South Carolina.
Lena slept on the flight home, but unbeknownst to her, as she slept, her loose bottom tooth fell out.
Once they landed and roused themselves for the last leg of their journey home, Lena suddenly realized she was missing something.
The family had already made it to the baggage claim at the Greenville-Spartanburg International Airport in Greer when Lena became distraught over the discovery.
“We groggily picked Lena up and were walking down to grab our bag,” Lauren said, according to Fox News. “We sat her down, and she realized, ‘Oh, my gosh, my tooth fell out.'”
“She started crying, saying, ‘I have nothing for the Tooth Fairy.’ You know, she’s tired, she’s six.”
It was also 2 in the morning — not the easiest time to get hold of an airport employee. They walked back toward security, but it was already closed.
It was late; they must have been tired — but they stopped to see what was the matter.
“They saw Lena upset and asked what happened,” Lauren recalled.
“A flight attendant said, ‘You know, I think the Tooth Fairy will understand. It’s not a big deal. I’m sure she deals with this all the time.’ But that didn’t quite do what I guess Lena needed it to do, and she was just really sad.”
That’s when Captain Josh Duchow took out a piece of paper and dashed off a note to the Tooth Fairy, explaining what had happened.
“Dear Tooth Fairy, Lena had a tooth fall out on her flight to Greenville, please take this note in place of her tooth. Captain Josh.”
That did it, and Lauren was so moved by the act of kindness that she posted about it on Facebook.
“In a world full of bad airline stories, @united came through when Lena fell asleep on her flight home and woke up without a tooth,” Lauren posted.
“Very concerned that The Tooth Fairy would not show up because the tooth is somewhere on the airplane, the pilot saw Lena trying to go back through security to get her tooth and helped her out.
“Thank you, Captain Josh! I’m sure the Tooth Fairy will accept this note in lieu of a tiny tooth.”
This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.
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