A Cold Night in Detroit

by Michelle
Michigan, USA

A Cold Night in Detroit

The night wasn’t going so well. I had won two tickets to see the Red Wings play against Phoenix, but my date stood me up, and I wasn’t really enjoying myself. It had nothing to do with the game.

During the first period break, I decided to walk around the concourse. Near the information stand, I heard a man asking the attendant for help. He had tickets for himself and his three children, but the tickets were in two separate sections. Since there were two empty seats next to me, and I had two seats to myself, I decided to give him my tickets and just go home.

I asked the attendant if she could find someone to walk me back to my car. The game was in full swing, and I didn’t want to go out to the garage alone and in the dark. She found Gary, who was the head of security for Comerica Park.

I had parked my truck in the garage when it was empty. Now it was full, and I became disoriented, and couldn’t picture the spot where I had parked. I already felt bad, and that just made things worse. Even though Gary was walking with me, I felt very much alone, and wanted to cry.

Gary encouraged me to talk about why I was upset. He told a few jokes and stories, and cheered me up immensely. He remained patient and friendly the entire time it took to find my truck, even though that meant spending 45 minutes in the bitter cold air of an open deck garage.

When we finally found my truck, I saw that it was out of gas. Gary walked me down to security and told them about my situation. The man in the security office let me warm up in front of a heater, sent a guard out to get gas, and refused to let me repay him for the gas. He said he wanted to make sure I was taken care of, and not to worry. When the guard returned, he drove me to my truck and stayed with me until the truck started.

At that point, I was ready to cry again — but not because I was upset. I was incredibly touched by the kindness Gary and the garage security staff showed me. You see, recently someone told me in a derogative way “You’re too nice”. Having been raised to treat others with the respect I’d wish to be treated with, sometimes I wonder if people today remember to simply be kind.

Having so many people going out of their way to help allowed me to feel I have good company in being kind. Thanks, guys, you saved me from more than just a cold night and a long wait for a tow truck.

Originally published as HeroicStories #419 on 19 June 2003

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