The first day of school can be stressful, especially if you’ve never taken the bus home alone before.
On the way home from the first day at Holy Family Catholic High School in Thornton, England, a 15-year-old student named Tom O’Brien was chatting with some younger kids on the bus when he noticed a boy crying nearby. Tom approached the 11 year old and asked him what was wrong, and the boy confessed that he had taken the wrong bus and was heading further from home with every passing mile.
With no cell phone and no money, the boy was panicked and had no idea what to do. Without batting an eye, young Tom went into “fixer” mode.
“It’s ok mate, don’t worry, you’ll be home soon,” he told the weeping boy. Pulling a ten pound note from his wallet, Tom came up with a plan on the spot. Harry Campbell and Dylan Robson, who are both in the same grade as the unnamed boy, also jumped at the chance to help him get home safely.
Pulling out his phone, Dylan Googled cab companies. Tom then called a taxi and arranged for it to meet them at the next stop. Dylan and Harry then got off with the boy and rode in the cab with him to make sure he got home.
When the cabbie heard what these boys were up to, he waived the fare! Not only that, but a local mother heard about what had happened from her son, Alex. Although she didn’t know Tom’s name, she shared the story on Facebook, telling others, “There really are some truly decent kids out there!”
“Alls I know is his name is Tom and he’s a year 11 pupil at Holy Family so if anyone knows him or his parents, let them know what a lovely lad they’ve raised! Faith in humanity restored a little today,” Ruth wrote.
As Ruth’s Facebook post went viral, inevitably someone who knows Tom happened to see it. It was Tom’s sister Katie O’Brien who saw Ruth’s post, and she was quick to chime in with, “Ahhh everyone it was my little brother.”
“I’ve just been tagged in this by a friend of mine who’s seen this status. We are so proud of Tom and it’s so lovely to know he’s a good lad in the outside world,” Katie continued.
Katie later said she and her family are “all incredibly proud of him, as well as the two younger lads who helped,” following up with a thought we probably all had: “It is just so nice to see teenagers getting some good press for a change.”
Tom’s father Kenny O’Brien reiterated that the family was so happy with how Tom reacted. “I am very proud of him. He is a very thoughtful lad and has a great personality. He didn’t tell me what had happened until later in the night when he realised people were talking about it on Facebook.”
“I would hope that if it was my son in the same situation, someone would have helped him,” Ruth said.
Way to be, Tom, Harry, and Dylan! We’re all in this together, and if you see someone who clearly needs help, it’s our duty to see if we can help. These boys have already learned what it means to be upstanding members of a community!
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