Mother thanks Lenexa man who helped her with children on flights

(Taken by Jessica Rudeen and used with permission.)

It’s not every day that someone has a heartwarming experience on a plane, but one woman is sharing her story about the kindness a Lenexa man showed her children during their flights.

Jessica Rudeen flight did not start under the best circumstances. She posted the story of the trip with her 4-month-old son and 3-year-old daughter on social media and it’s gone viral.

In the post, Rudeen detailed how she was trying to calm her infant who had not been fed and a toddler who was beginning to scream about being on a flight when a Lenexa man named Todd came to her aid.

She said Todd held her baby for her while she took care of her little girl, adding that the man became the girl’s “best friend” by the end of the flight after they had watched a movie, colored and talked together.

As it turned out, they even had the same connecting flight, so he changed his seat to sit next to Rudeen and her children so he could help out.

The mother of two called Todd “one of the nicest men I have ever met in my life” and said she posted the story on Facebook in the hopes that she could find him again.

A few hours and thousands of shares later, Rudeen was able to connect with her skyway savior.

Todd told KCTV5 he usually flies solo but could tell that Rudeen needed a helping hand on the flight.

“She was holding a 4-month-old and a 3-year-old daughter,” he said. “They weren't having a very good morning, so I looked back at my book and said, ‘Well, we're probably not going to get back to that today.’”

Rudeen said she is now planning a proper thank you for when her and Todd’s families can meet again. While Todd said he appreciated the gesture, he also sees his actions as something that should be more common.

“I don't think it's anything special,” he explained. “I just think it's how humans ought to treat other humans.”

Rudeen's full story is below:My first flights with an infant and a toddler started out with a little panic when we boarded the plane. My 4 month old was screaming his head off because, due to a series of unexpected events, I was unable to nurse him before boarding the plane.

My 3 year old, who was excited before boarding the plane, lost her nerve and began screaming and kicking “I want to get off the plane! I don’t want to go!” I honestly thought we’d get kicked off the plane.

So with two kids losing their minds, I was desperately trying to calm the situation. This man reached for the baby and held him while I forced a seatbelt on Caroline, got her tablet and started her movie.

Once she was settled and relatively calmed, he distracted her so that I could feed Alexander.

Finally, while we were taxiing, the back of the plane no longer had screams.

During the flight, he colored and watched a movie with Caroline, he engaged in conversation and showed her all the things outside. By the end of the flight, he was Caroline’s best friend. I’m not sure if he caught the kiss she landed on his shoulder while they were looking out the window.

Amazingly, we had the same connection in Charlotte to Wilmington, a connection he navigates frequently for work. He helped us get off the plane and led us to the next gate with Caroline in hand.

If that wasn’t enough, he changed his seat on the next flight to sit in our row to help us.

This guy, Todd, showed me kindness and compassion that I’ve never known from another person. His wife, he said, had a similar experience when their two boys were young and a stranger showed her the same kindness.

I am blown away by God’s hand in this because we could have been placed next to anyone, but we were seated next to one of the nicest men I have ever met in my life.

I’d like to find him. His name is Todd. He has a son at the University of Arkansas and he lives in Lenexa, KS.

If you could help share this post so that I can find him, I’d really appreciate your help!Copyright 2018 KCTV (Meredith Corp.) All rights reserved.

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