All friendships start with a first impression. Hence the type of impression decides how long the friendship will last. Here we are about to read of a friendship that sparked with a simple act of kindness.
The incident took place between two individuals, TJ Lawlor and Riley Dehne. TJ is a Clerk at a Whole Foods store in Redwood. Riley is a boy with special needs.
The first impression of the pair took place six years ago, on one Sunday morning. While TJ was stocking goods at the frozen section of the store, suddenly a young boy with down syndrome approached him.
TJ in an interview said to NBC BAY AREA, that when they first met, he asked how he was doing on the day. This gave Tj the chance to introduce himself to Riley.
The incident made them friends and built up some more conversation.
Eventually, TJ offered Riley an ice pop. Afterward, TJ asked Riley if he would help him fill up the freezers. Without any questions, Riley did agree to help him. He loved it a lot. Riley being a huge fan of the movie”Frozen”, was also a major reason for him to join TJ.
Riley cherished the new experience and made a startup into a special friendship. Watching Riley having a good time with TJ made Andi Dehne feel relieved. The new friendship made her want to schedule a visit to the store at least once a week.
The weekly activity repeated for years.
Riley and Andi kept visiting the store every week while TJ started looking forward to the visit with much eagerness. Then TJ greets the mother and the son. Afterward, they start stocking groceries and building up conversations. With time Riley was looking forward to the meetup.
While Andi continues shopping, the pair stock shelves, take out the trash and pick groceries for TJ.
Andi said that the scene of these acts honestly fills her heart. She also said that it is harder to get on with a person when they are with special needs. Yet TJ took time to get to know Riley. He took time to meet him and then to learn his ups and downs to build on them.
Riley’s mother was so moved by the friendship. Eventually, the friendship made her write a story about them for the local paper. She mentioned how much confidence Riley has built up being friends with TJ. Also, this made Riley understand how much the world is wider than he thinks.
TJ was also fascinated hearing these. TJ had never thought that such simple acts would have such a greater impact on a person’s life.
The friends were both happy and thankful for them being friends.
TJ further said that he would never forget how he first met Riley. The friendship had made TJ more of an impact than he had expected. The connection with the young Riley had him change his life for the better.
“Every time Riley comes in the store, nothing but love, nothing but smiles,” said TJ. And he stated that Riley does cheer him up while he cheers up Riley. That is what TJ had been looking for in a friend.
The story of these two friends is a great example of kindness and genuine friendship
At the start, it was a simple hello. Now it’s a lifelong friendship. How long did the simple act of kindness go? So be kind to everyone. Try to make the story a lesson in your life.
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