Stranger Gives Up First Class Seat to a Mom Traveling With Her Sick Baby

Proof there is still a lot of good in the world.
ByStephanie Grassullo
Associate Editor
Published
Dec 2018
view from in flight airplane in the coulds
Photo: iStock

Flying with a baby is never easy. But flying with a sick infant who needs an oxygen tank is exhausting—physically and emotionally. So when a random stranger offered up his first class seat to Kelsey Zwick so she and her sick child could have a more comfortable flight, his kindness made her day, as well as the day of thousands of others who got wind of the uplifting story.

In a now viral Facebook post, Zwick recounts the special moment which took place while boarding her flight to Philadelphia. Describing how much this kind gesture means to her, she attracted the attention of many, who helped share her story more than 420,000 times.

“To the man in 2D, today you were traveling from Orlando to Philly. I don’t know you, but I imagine you saw us somewhere,” she begins her note. “I was pushing a stroller, had a diaper bag on my arm and also lugging an oxygen machine for my daughter. We had smiles on our faces as we were headed to see her ‘friends’ at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia.”

The mom and the baby got situated in their seats, and Zwick, making the best of the situation, even joked with her neighbors about sitting next to an excited baby. Then, the flight attendant came over with the heartwarming news.

“You were giving up your comfortable, first class seat to us,” she recalls. “Not able to hold back tears, I cried my way up the aisle while my daughter Lucy laughed! She felt it in her bones too—real, pure, goodness. I smiled and thanked you as we switched, but didn’t get to thank you properly.”

Overwhelmed by the kind gesture, the mom regrets she wasn’t able to fully express her gratitude. By sharing her story on Facebook, she hopes her message will be heard.

“Thank you. Not just for the seat itself, but for noticing. For seeing us and realizing that maybe things are not always easy. For deciding you wanted to show a random act of kindness to us,” Zwick says. “It reminded me how much good there is in this world. I can’t wait to tell Lucy someday. In the meantime, we will pay it forward…We truly feel inspired by your generosity.”

But the story didn’t end there, because, as per usual, social media didn’t disappoint. In an interview with Daily Mail, the generous passenger was identified as 46-year-old Jason Kunselman, an industrial engineer from Pennsylvania.

“I expected to see her in the front since she had the oxygen machine with her, but when I boarded she was in the back,” Kunselman tells Daily Mail. “So I asked the flight attendant if she thought the young lady with the baby would be more comfortable in my seat…I just hoped that she had a better flight with more room.”

And she sure did.

An act of kindness like this serves as a much-needed reminder to the good that exists in the world. Whether it’s giving up your cozy seat on a plane or a simple gesture to someone who may need a pick-me-up—like this teenager who bought coffee for a random mom—little acts of kindness go a long way.

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