October 29, 2021
A group of lifeguards at Orange Beach have become social media heroes since sharing the story of their encounter with a 95-year-old tourist. They accompanied the beautiful account with some heartwarming pictures.
Caring for the elderly is one act of kindness capable of moving anyone to tears. However, the lifeguards at Orange Beach in Alabama only hoped to put a smile on Dottie Schneider’s face when they decided to lend her a helping hand.
SET FOR A VACATION
The 95-year-old based in Chandler, Indiana decided to hit the beach alongside her daughter Kimberly Waterbury to have an amazing holiday experience.
However, they left one part of their perfectly-planned vacation uncovered: how to tread through the sandy shores seamlessly, given that Schneider was wheelchair-bound.
The harsh reality hit them when they reached their destination. Determined to enjoy the wonderful beach experience at all costs, the elderly woman struggled to walk through the sand with her daughter in tow but found every step increasingly difficult.
LIFEGUARDS TO THE RESCUE
Luckily for the mother-daughter duo, the Beach Safety Division in the City of Orange Beach spotted Schneider on the beach.
They immediately offered her a ride in the beach patrol vehicle, liberating her from her misery. They also offered her their office number, reminding her to call each time she needed to visit the beach.
Soon, the lifeguards made a point of picking up the woman and her daughter from their hotel, driving her all the way to the beach, and carrying her through the sands to her designated chair close to the surfs.
THE LITTLE THINGS MATTER
Their kind gesture made all the difference for Scheider and her daughter, who had a better holiday experience than they could have ever imagined. Brett Leisinger, one of the lifeguards, explained:
“In the past, when they’d gone to the beach, she couldn’t get to the beachfront. [...] Being able to put her feet in the sand and seeing the waves crash on the shore, I think that made all the difference.”
Waterbury admitted the act of kindness made her mom feel special and was an experience they would forever appreciate. They repaid the heart-melting gesture with a fridge full of food and hearts full of gratitude.
Orange Beach Surf Rescue shared the story on Facebook, along with adorable pictures of the older woman being assisted by the lifeguards.
One of the pics showed a lifeguard carrying the elderly woman through the sandy beach, while another showed him carefully placing her on a beachfront chair.
In another pic, the elderly tourist looked happy as she posed on her beach chair, surrounded by her new beachfront family. The touching story left many singing odes to the kind-hearted young men.
One comment read: “What a very beautiful thing these young people did. Bless them for the happiness they brought to the lady and her family, Thank you for your kindness.”
Others admitted they finally found reasons to restore their faith in humanity after seeing the touching story.
EVERY SITUATION IS AN OPPORTUNITY
Notably, one doesn’t have to be a trained lifeguard to lend a helping hand to those in need, especially the elderly. In fact, opportunities to perform a kind deed present themselves in every situation.
The officers showed up at their apartment after receiving reports of incessant shouting from the neighbor. After listening to the couple, they discovered the discord could easily be settled by two hot bowls of pasta.
Hence, they got to work, gathering the ingredients on hand to prepare a delicious meal for the couple, who ate it with gusto. Of course, one doesn’t see this every day!