Elderly Neighbour Dies And Leaves Two-Year-Old 14 Years' Worth Of Christmas Presents
Sometimes in life, we form incredible friendships when we're too young to realize just how special they are. When I was a kid, I used to love playing draughts with my grandpa, and it wasn't until I grew up, some years after he passed, that I realized just how special our games (I only ever beat him once because he let me) were. Personally, I think kids and the elderly can from particularly special bonds because it's the meeting of people who're at the beginning and end of their lives.
Case in point, what this old man did for his two-year-old neighbor before he passed away. Prior to his recent death, Ken Watson, 87, decided he was going to prepare 14 years' worth of Christmas presents for Cadi, ensuring that she'd have a gift to remember him by every year up until her 16th birthday - an act of kindness which left her parents in tears.
Taking to Twitter to praise Ken's kindness, Cadi's father Owen Williams, wrote:
"Our elderly neighbour passed away recently. His daughter popped round a few moments ago clutching a large plastic sack. In the sack were all the Christmas presents he'd bought *our* daughter for the next thirteen years."
Ken, who said that he was going to live until he was 100, sadly passed away in October and when his daughter was emptying his home in Barry, Vale of Glamorgan, she discovered the bag of presents he'd prepared for Cadi.
In an interview with LADbible, Owen said, "She called around last night and she was on the doorstep clutching what looked like a rubbish bag and I just put two and two together and I just got 18. I assumed she wanted me to put out some rubbish for her."
"Instantly I said 'yep, no problem'. Then she said 'these are the gifts that dad has left for Cadi for Christmas' and it just blindsided me.
"I went into the kitchen and my wife was on FaceTime to her mom in Ireland and it was like Mary Poppins' bag - I just kept pulling them out and they kept coming and coming."
Because it was assumed that Ken had chosen the presents based on what age Cardi would be when she was opening them, Owen and his wife Caroline were then faced with a dilemma: Do they open the gifts, see what age they are appropriate for and then rewrap them? Or do they stick with Alan's original wrapping and present them to Cardi at random?
For obvious reasons, this heartwarming Christmas story garnered a lot of attention on Twitter, so Owen decided to tell his followers more about the man behind what will inevitably mean Christmas magic for his daughter until 2032.
"There's some press interest in this story, so let me tell you a bit about the man," he wrote.
"Ken was a former salvage diver, seaman, carpenter, baker...
The first time I met him, he was bouncing a 20ft ladder across the face of his house.
He was on top.
He was 83 at the time."
"Our dog loved him. I mean, genuine visceral love," Owen continued. "It was mainly due to the chocolate digestive biscuits he gave her on first meeting. Really scream. Like a banshee. He'd call her 'my darling' and 'sweetheart'."
"He played the accordion. We'd hear the strains of ompah drift through the kitchen late at night.
He said he'd live to 100.
He planned to do this again..."
Despite the fact the majority of voters in Owen's Twitter poll were in favor of him giving Cardi the presents at random and not opening them, he caved into temptation, writing, "We opened one. We couldn't resist."
However, by all accounts, none of the other presents have been touched, and as far as the good people of the internet are concerned, if Cardi is given them as they are, it will teach her the true meaning of Christmas.
"You HAVE to give her one a year," wrote Twitter user Matthew Eltringham. "It doesn't matter in the slightest if they are too old or too young. Presents are all about the giving, not the receiving."
Heli Heartland added, "Think of the future impact on your daughter when she realizes the unconditional love that a 'stranger' (she won't remember him) has had for her. It will serve her for the rest of her life. Don't let your own curiosity ruin that."
Thankfully, another Twitter user @OwsWills suggested what was likely on many people's minds and said that it would be a heartwarming idea for people enchanted by the story if he shared Ken's presents each year.
"Would be great if we could all follow this story every year to see what the gift was each year. Season's greetings folks," he wrote.
After Ken's incredible gesture, Owen is encouraging others to reach out to their neighbors so that similar friendships can be formed. He said, "What struck me in the messages I've received is how many people don't actually know their neighbors."
"One thing I would say to that is that our friends and family will always be there for us but they're not physically there for you. Your neighbour, on the other hand,d are both literally and physically in the next house or just across the road.
"In a time of crisis you can turn to your friends and family by all means but theoretically your neighbours are immediate. They're the people that would rescue you from a house fire or if all the slates fell off your roof.
"In terms of a Christmas wish I would say, just say hi to your neighbours and there's no better time to do it. Take a bottle of wine or prosecco."
Here here, Owen!