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Old School Friends Take Care of Their Late Teacher’s Granddaughter for 27 Years as Promised – Story of the Day

Roshanak Hannani
Jun 14, 2022
12:20 A.M.
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Patrick and Arnold met in first grade and had the most vital friendship in the world at 68. But 27 years ago, their favorite teacher, Mrs. Marshall, asked them to care for her granddaughter, Ally, after her daughter died. They kept their promise as best possible and got a huge surprise when she grew up.

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Arnold was a new student at a school in Minnesota, and the first-grader was sitting alone at recess when Patrick just came over and started talking to him. They became friends immediately over their love of books and the fact that they were both born on June 25.

Their English teacher, Mrs. Marshall, became their favorite when she discovered how much they loved literature. She recommended them books and encouraged their writing.

They started a club for booklovers at school, with Mrs. Marshall as the faculty supervisor. Soon enough, they both planned to attend the University of Minnesota to learn more about writing.

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Patrick wanted to get into journalism, and Arnold thought about becoming a teacher, but eventually, he started writing and publishing his books.

Mrs. Marshall encouraged their love for words, and they both sent her their works whenever possible. | Source: Pexels

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Both of them sent copies of their work to Mrs. Marshall as much as possible. She always wrote them back with tons of praises.

"Please, come to my house! It's urgent!" she yelled through the speakerphone of Patrick's mobile.

I always knew you two would make it big out there! she would write. They also visited her often, knew her family, and considered her a big part of their lives. Therefore, they also attended the funeral of Mrs. Marshall's daughter, Alana, who died in a sudden car accident.

"I'm sorry about your loss, Mrs. Marshall. I can't even imagine. How is the baby doing?" Patrick asked his favorite teacher. He could tell she was acting composed, but it was clear she was trying to hide her pain. Arnold came over and offered his condolences too.

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"That's actually something I want to talk to you and Arnold about. Would you step aside with me for a second?" the older woman requested.

"What's going, Mrs. Marshall?" Arnold asked, frowning.

"You both know my daughter and granddaughter were my only family, right?" she asked at first, and they both nodded. "Well, now that baby, Ally, only has me. But I'm afraid I might not have long in this world."

The older woman told them something stunning at the funeral, and they didn't know what to say at first. | Source: Pexels

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"What are you talking about, Mrs. Marshall? You're in your 60s. You have tons of time left," Patrick scoffed gently.

But Mrs. Marshall shook her head. "That's the problem. I don't have much time. I didn't get a chance to tell my daughter, but I've been diagnosed with cancer. It's advanced, and there's nothing they can do for me anymore."

"No! Mrs. Marshall, we're so sorry. Are you sure? We can check with more doctors," Arnold suggested, worried.

"No, boys. My time is coming, and my granddaughter will be all alone. I want to request something from you, and I know it will be a hard thing to do. Would you please take care of her when I'm gone?" the older woman begged, her eyes filling with tears.

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Patrick and Arnold stared at each other. They were in their 40s, had their own families, and didn't know about raising a baby again. But as they looked into each other's eyes, they knew the answer immediately. "Yes," they said simultaneously, and Mrs. Marshall cried harder at the idea.

At some point, they both wanted to adopt her but decided that Ally should decide on her own. | Source: Pexels

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Sadly, the older woman they had adored for many years as a role model and a second mother died only a few months later. Patrick and his wife took Ally at first, alternating with Arnold's family. Mrs. Marshall had named them Ally's guardians in her will, so it worked, but the arrangement was a bit odd initially.

Arnold even thought about adopting the girl, but Patrick wanted to do the same at some point, so they decided to let Ally determine who should adopt her when she was of age. But Ally never did. She loved having two families and never chose between them.

At 18, Ally moved out to go to college and major in English. She wanted to become a teacher just like the grandmother she never really got to know well. It was her way of honoring her and the kind men who had raised her without thinking twice.

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Twenty-seven years passed since Mrs. Marshall's shocking request, and neither Patrick nor Arnold regretted the decision to raise Ally together. She grew up into an amazing young woman who seamlessly fit into their families. Everyone loved her, and she loved them back with all her heart, as both men remained close friends.

They both walked her down the aisle, and she considered them her dads. | Source: Pexels

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She had married a man named Alan Collins, and they walked her down the aisle. They both saw her as another daughter and were incredibly happy about it. Ally had never given them any issues. She was responsible, calm, intelligent, and fiercely independent.

However, one day, Patrick and Arnold were getting their Sunday coffee when Alice called them desperately.

"Please, come to my house! It's urgent!" she yelled through the speakerphone of Patrick's mobile.

"What's happening, Ally? Are you hurt? Where is our son-in-law?" Arnold asked, concerned.

"PLEASE JUST COME!" she screamed again and hung up quickly.

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They had no idea, but Patrick grabbed a few bills from his pocket, threw them on the table, and rushed up. Arnold was already halfway out the door because they had taken his car. He drove them both to her house, which was thankfully not far from the café.

The front door of Ally's house was ajar, so they burst through it and were shocked. | Source: Pexels

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When they got there, they saw a bunch of cars outside and didn't understand what was happening. "Is there an event today?" Arnold wondered as they parked his vehicle and got out.

"I don't think Ally would be so agitated if we had missed a birthday or something," Patrick replied, shaking his head at his friend.

They both walked quickly up the steps and noticed several things immediately. The door was ajar, and it was eerily quiet inside. Arnold kicked the door in, and they burst inside only to see all their families and friends jump up and yell, "Surprise!"

Both men stood there astonished at the scene, as their birthday was about a week away. "What's going on?" Patrick asked, looking around with a big smile.

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But Arnold tugged his arm and pointed at Ally's wall. A huge banner read: "It's a boy!" and below those words, they read: "Arnold Patrick Collins."

Ally stepped forward with her ultrasound picture and confirmed the news of her baby. | Source: Pexels

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Finally, Ally stepped away from the crowd and grinned at the men who had stood as her father, holding out a picture of her ultrasound. "Congratulations! You're going to be granddads together! You can consider it an early birthday gift!"

They both grabbed the ultrasound picture and teared up as they grinned at the image. "It's the best gift ever," they uttered at the same time.

What can we learn from this story?

  • It's important to honor the people who loved and cared for you. Ally honored her grandmother by becoming a teacher, but she honored the men who raised her by naming her future child after them.
  • Raising a child can be extremely rewarding, even if you're not blood-related. Patrick and Arnold took a child into their lives and raised her together only because their favorite teacher requested it, but it was a decision they didn't regret for one second.
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If you enjoyed this story, you might like this one about four friends who decided to meet 40 years later, but one of them left a shocking note.

This account is inspired by our reader's story and written by a professional writer. Any resemblance to actual names or locations is purely coincidental. All images are for illustration purposes only. Share your story with us; maybe it will change someone's life. If you would like to share your story, please send it to info@amomama.com.

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