A crane operator gained something unexpected from working on a work site – a new friend.
It all began when Shawn Beveridge, a crane operator, kept noticing a man on a wheelchair sitting outside a nursing home across the construction site where he was working.
The man seemed captivated by what he was seeing and consistently showed up every day at the same spot, just watching them build all day long.
“Since day 1 when I arrived on this job site I’ve noticed him sitting there every morning from 7am he takes lunch when we do and doesn’t leave until I shut the crane down and head out,” Shawn wrote in a now viral Facebook post about the man.
Shawn thought to himself, “he’s just a curious old man and wanting to enjoy his days outside vs being cooped up in his room.” But as he would later learn, there was more to this man’s story than meets the eye.
After a couple of days, curiosity got the better of the crane operator, and he decided to approach the man who was as usual across the work site and introduce himself.
Shawn learned that the man’s name was Harold and that he had been staying in the nursing home for seven years. Their first conversation lasted for two and a half hours and in that time, Shawn learned that Harold was nearing the end of his life.
“His heart valves are clogged and some disease has been eating at him for years,” he wrote.
Before his health failed, Harold worked as a crane operator for over fifty years, which explains why he liked to stay outside and watch them work.
“He said he enjoys seeing what he use to love to do for a living and never thought he’d ever be able to see or be around a crane again and let alone be so close to see one in action,” Shawn wrote.
Harold had two daughters and a son but unfortunately, none of them have paid him a visit ever since he came to live in the nursing home seven years ago. That’s when Shawn thought of making a deal with the man.
He told him that he would come and chat with him every day at the work site after his shift so Harold could critique his work. In exchange for his advice, Shawn would bring him a black coffee every morning and buy him lunch twice a week from wherever he wishes.
“He didn’t skip a beat before ABSOLUTELY! came out of his mouth. I guess I’m writing this post because if I would have never walked over to him I would have never gotten to know him. I’m thankful to have the opportunity to make this man’s last days enjoyable. Filled with purpose and to be able to help him smile again,” Shawn wrote.
Knowing Harold and his story meant the world to Shawn, and he’s so glad that he met him during a time when he needed a friend the most. He concluded his post by encouraging everyone to make an effort to make someone else’s day better.
“Always try to enlighten someone’s spirits. When God chooses to take this man home I’m happy knowing that I’ve been placed here at this location to make his days better. I’m happy with that,” he ended.
Shawn’s post about his new friend went viral, garnering 462,000 reactions and 201,000 shares. He says that he’s received over 4,000 messages about his post, so he decided to create a separate Facebook page where he will document updates about Harold and their day to day lives.
We truly never know what a person is going through and the difficulties he has faced in his life, so it is imperative that we do our best to be compassionate beings towards each other, always.
This story could teach everyone a lesson in kindness. Share this with your friends and family to spread the message!