Thankful for People Like Brenden Foster

Today is Thanksgiving – the day our country sets aside to celebrate family and think about our blessings.

As I write this, most of my food preparation is completed. My husband and I are waiting for our daughters and son-in-laws to join us for a dinner with all the trimmings.

We’ll fill our tummies until we think we can’t eat anymore – and then we’ll find room for one last bite of apple or pumpkin pie.

A fire will blaze in the fireplace while we spend the evening playing games and enjoying each other’s company.

I’ve heard several people say over the past several days that Thanksgiving is their favorite holiday because it’s one of the few that isn’t consumed in commercialism. Instead, the focus is on spending time with family and friends. We think about what we “have” instead of what we think we “should have” or “want.”

Today I’m also thinking about a little boy, Brenden Foster. Exactly a week ago today, I wrote about Brenden’s dying wish to feed the homeless.

Last Thursday, here in Western Washington, people from all over took part in the Stuff the Truck food drive in Brenden's honor. Seven semi-truck loads of food and more than $95,000 in cash were donated to benefit Northwest Harvest and Food Lifeline – organizations that provide food to those in need.

But, it didn’t stop there. People in other parts of the country from Los Angeles to Ohio to Florida also held their own food drives.

While reports were coming in of how much food was being donated throughout the day, Brenden’s family knew he didn’t have much longer to live.

But Brenden told his grandmother that he was at peace. He also told her that angels had come three times, but he wasn’t ready to go with them. And that when he became an angel, he would continue to do good work.

Brenden died last Friday, after seeing what had been accomplished for the hungry.

Today I’m thankful for my family, friends, home, and job.

I’m also thankful for little boys with big hearts who inspire me to be a better person.


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