My wife and I love short weekend retreats. Oftentimes we wake up in the morning and leave with no destination in place. We have discovered many wonderful little roadside attractions over the last 4 years. These wonderful trips have created amazing memories for us and opportunities to meet some wonderful individuals along the way.
This past Labor Day Weekend was one such trip. My wife and I decided last minute to get away and go in a direction we had never gone together. We headed for Wyoming and the Tetons. We were excited for the much needed time together hiking and enjoying the mountains as we always do in a new and majestic setting. We anxiously left home and headed for the Tetons, just us and our baby girl.
The trip took an unexpected turn as we neared our destination, we had arrived just outside of a little town called Afton, Wyoming about 80 miles from our destination when our Jeep overheated. We sat on the side of the road as we waited for the engine to cool down then examined the hoses and radiator. Strangely, nothing appeared to be broken so we filled the radiator up and head onward. We overheated again, the sun had set and we were nearly 10 miles from Afton with our 8 month old daughter.
We sat on the side of the road for a few minutes as we contemplated our options. We said a prayer for help and got out to look at the car again, wondering if we could fill up the radiator again to crawl into Afton. As soon as we opened the hood, a truck stopped by, this young man hops out and says “hi I’m Mike, can I help you?” My wife and I quickly exchanged looks of relief and gratitude with one another as we graciously accepted Mikes help.
As we looked into the Jeep, we noticed that the pulley on the water pump had fallen off and water was coming out of it, we were not going anywhere! Mike quickly pulled his truck around, hooked on a tow rope and pulled us into town and to a hotel parking lot. This good Samaritan proceeded to walk into the lobby of the hotel with us to make certain there were sufficient rooms available, After we checked in, Mike asked me for my cell phone number and told me that he would call me in the morning around 7 am to help us further.
Sure enough, the following morning Mike called as promised. He told me on the phone that he would be there to pick me up in about 30 minutes. Mike had made arrangements for the local auto parts store, which was closed due to the labor day holiday, to open up long enough for us to get a water pump to install. Mikes friendship with the owner had made that possible. After obtaining the necessary parts from an extremely kind and generous owner of the parts store, Mike and I headed to his office to verify the torque specifications for the water pump, then we headed to Mikes house to move some vehicles around out of the driveway so as to have access to his garage.
We then met my wife and daughter back at the hotel where we again placed a tow rope on the Jeep and towed it to Mikes home. We proceeded to take out the old water pump and replace it. Mike had to the necessary tools to make this happen. We were unable to get the jeep into the garage, so we stood in the down pouring rain outside the garage as we replaced it, all the while Mike was urging me to stay in the garage to stay dry, I was unable to oblige that request as I was so humbled by this mans sacrifice and willingness to serve that I was going to be there assisting him on my car.
Graciously and humbly we thanked Mike for his extreme kindness, generosity and service to complete strangers. Mikes example of service was truly an answer to our prayers the night before for help and assistance. Mike sent me a text message hours later following up to make certain that my beloved wife had been able to see the Majestic Tetons for the first time. He was more concerned about her and what she had hoped for on this trip than his time, inconvenience and rain as he helped us. His unquestionable desire to help others provided a much needed service that we were in need of. My wife and I will forever be grateful for his service to us in our time of need.
Thank you Mike and may God bless you and your family! You are a remarkable example and a fine young man!