Many of us have experienced the strain of being on an airplane when a young child starts getting upset – and while most passengers get agitated or try to ignore it, this woman made a difference, instead.
Rochel and Bentzion Groner were on a plane back from chaperoning a trip to Israel on Friday, and the flight was expected to take eight hours. After a three hour delay and one hour in the sky, many of the passengers were already exhausted.
“His cries were heard throughout the plane and you could feel the tension among the other passengers,” wrote Bentzion on Facebook. “No one wanted to say anything but it was getting very uncomfortable.”
Rochel told Good News Network she had only one thought: “I gotta help this kid.”
She walked up to the boy and offered him her hand. When he took it, she led him to the back of the plane, took his shoes off so he could be more comfortable, and proceeded to quietly sit and play for several hours.
The boy’s mother traveled with her son to Africa for a year. She lives in the U.S. but is of African descent and barely spoke English. She did, however, know how to express her gratitude.
“Smiles are universal,” says Rochel. “She kept saying, ‘Thank you, thank you, thank you’.”
Rochel’s compassionate gesture came quite naturally, as she and Bentzion both work with Friendship Circle International and ZAB’s Place: a Jewish organization for children with disabilities and a thrift store that exclusively hires employees with special needs in Matthews, North Carolina.
“While most of the passengers watched in awe, little did they know that for Rochel this is her life,” wrote Bentzion. “If we just offer our hand in love and acceptance, miracles will follow.”
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Reprint (Photos by Bentzion Groner)