Woman takes orphaned 6-year-old child to visit mom’s grave and learns an important lesson

(Courtesy of Anam George)

A South African woman was startled when an orphaned child she had befriended on her shopping route asked for help to visit her mother’s grave. The woman obliged and was moved by the outcome.

When it comes to kids, she stressed, “never make a promise that you can’t fulfill.”

Anam George, 28, was born and raised in South Africa. She works as a water process controller for both water and a treatment plant but always has time for a 6-year-old girl named Karla.

Karla is “very energetic, clever, and loving,” Anam told The Epoch Times via social media. Karla lives with her grandparents, an aunt, and cousins, but is the only child in the household who lost both her parents—at a very young age.

“She only has her mother’s picture that helps [her] know how pretty her mom looked,” Anam explained.

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28-year-old Anam George from South Africa. (Courtesy of Anam George)

The pair first met at a spaza shop—a South African convenience store—where Karla asked for loose coins to buy snacks or play games. Anam helped whenever she could from that day on, and the pair became firm friends.

“I know we love each other,” said Anam. “Sometimes it’s really hard to intervene between her and her family, but when she sees me she will coming running and she will be in my arms the whole time.”

During an Oct. 25 encounter with her young friend, Anam was moved by a new request. Between giggling and dancing, Karla asked, “Can you take me to go see my mom?”

“I was not sure how to answer her,” Anam recalled. “To shift her mind off that, I said, ‘Let’s go buy some chips at the spaza shop.’”

As Anam carried Karla to the store, she heard the little girl proudly telling her friends that she would get to visit her mom. As the pair parted ways, Karla pleaded, “Please don’t forget to take me.”

The little girl even went inside her house to bring a picture of her mother to show Anam, and later went to the gate with the picture while signaling not to forget about the plan she had for the next day.

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Anam George with her 6-year-old friend, Karla. (Courtesy of Anam George)

At that moment, Anam agreed, asking Karla’s grandmother for help in locating the grave.

The next day, Anam left work early to buy flowers with the last money she had, then drove to pick up Karla. “Little Karla all dressed up … didn’t go play, she came running when she heard my music playing,” Anam recalled.

Reaching the graveyard with Karla and her aunt, Anam was immediately struck by the simplicity of Karla’s wish and the importance of their visit. “I was heartbroken,” she said. “I kept widening my eyes not to cry … but I had to be strong for my little friend.”

Karla, said Anam, had mixed emotions. “She was happy that she was around her [mother’s] grave, which maybe gave her a sense of ease,” she said, “and she kept giving me tight hugs while she kept looking at the grave.”

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Anam George with Karla at the graveyard. (Courtesy of Anam George)

Later that day, as Anam was so moved by the visit, she shared a post on South Africa’s #ImStaying Facebook page, a page dedicated to all people united by a desire to improve the country. Her post went viral, and she has since received 33,000 reactions.

Since their trip, Anam has visited Karla laden with clothes for Christmas that she bought her and some that were given by people from the #ImStaying group.

Anam also wants to thank everybody who has assisted the little girl or shared her story. “There’s no amount of words that I can use to describe how thankful I am,” she told The Epoch Times.

“Never make a promise that you can’t fulfill to kids, because kids do not forget,” Anam reflected of the lesson she learned that day,” and always allow yourself to be used as vessels by God.”

 

Reunion at Walmart: Dog lost for 3 weeks wanders into store to find owner at work

(Courtesy of Danielle Robinette)

June Rountree was frantic when her dog, Abby, went missing, leaving behind just her collar and leash tied to a ground stake. For days, June and her husband searched for their beloved pet, but she was nowhere to be seen.

The Rountrees started losing hope. But they couldn’t have anticipated getting their very own holiday miracle three weeks later: incredibly, the lost dog walked into Walmart and greeted June at her register during her shift at work.

The 60-year-old cashier was just working her usual shift on Nov. 28, manning her register, when she heard a commotion and glanced up. To her astonishment and delight, she saw her 4-year-old black-and-white dog near the ice machine.

“I said, ‘It can’t be,’” June recounted.

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(Courtesy of Danielle Robinette)

People were trying to catch the dog, but as soon as Abby heard June’s voice, she came running over.

“I called her name and she came to me,” June told The Washington Post. “I bent over and hugged her. I completely lost it then. I couldn’t speak. I was in complete shock and just couldn’t believe it.”

The Rountrees knew Abby was smart, but they had no idea how the dog knew where June worked.

“Never in a million years did I think she would show up at Walmart,” an amazed June said. “How she knew I worked there, I do not know.”

June had worked at the Walmart 1.5 miles from her home for the past 10 years. She had never brought Abby inside the store, though she says she had walked her past the parking lot and the woods behind the store several times in the past.

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(Courtesy of Danielle Robinette)

A 42-year-old customer service associate, Danielle Robinette, recalled the confusion surrounding the event.

“I was like, ‘What in the world is happening?’” Danielle said. “I’m a huge animal lover, so I just followed her, and she ran up to register No. 6.”

Danielle was surprised when her co-worker bent over and hugged the dog for several long minutes but soon learned that it was June’s missing pet.

“She looked up with tears streaming down her face and said: ‘This is Abby. She’s been missing for three weeks,’” Danielle remembers. “I was just floored.”

June was left speechless, just grateful to see her beloved companion once again.

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(Courtesy of June Rountree via Danielle Robinette)

“I can’t express the feeling,” Rountree said. “All these people were there around the dog and I couldn’t even talk to them.”

Danielle snapped a photo of the tearful reunion and shared them on Facebook, where the pictures went viral with over 12,000 shares.

“I tell you what,” Danielle wrote. “Abby is one smart girl she came to her [mommy’s] work to find her!! I’m so glad she found you Mrs June!! Such a wonderful story I just had to share.”

June said she is grateful that her dog appears to have been well fed during her three-week sojourn.

“I want to thank whoever she came upon that gave her something to eat,” said the grateful dog mom.

Clive Wynne, director of the Canine Science Collaboration at Arizona State University, said it is totally plausible that a dog could find its owner at work.

“I suspect that the dog was roaming around somewhere at random until it stumbled upon a familiar location,” he said. “A dog’s navigation isn’t perfect, but it does recognize certain important, large landmarks.”

Given Abby’s walks near June’s place of work, it seems a logical possibility she might explore the familiar area in an effort to reorient herself and find home.

“Dogs wander off in the heat of the moment—whether they spot a squirrel or food,” Wynne added. “But they have a tremendous connection and powerful emotional bond with their people.”

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(Courtesy of June Rountree via Danielle Robinette)

Later that night, June brought her pet home for a happy reunion with her fur sister, Coco, who was heartbroken when Abby went missing. Then they fed Abby a hearty meal, and the little adventurer curled up on her dog bed for a nice long nap.

“It really is just unbelievable,” June said. “It’s like a dream. You can’t make this stuff up.”