Jodi St. Clair was brought to tears.

As a parent, you want to look out for your children and always keep them safe. So while many parents of grown children in the military are proud, they also worry. It can be a hard thing to deal with, knowing that your child is putting themselves in harm’s way for a good cause.

One mom who was dealing with emotions over having two kids in the military still wanted to show everyone how proud she was. But the response she got when she did was completely unexpected.

A Proud Mama

woman with short blond hair

Jodi St. Clair and her husband had two kids serving in 2017: Her older son, Jacob, 22, was serving in Korea, and her younger son, Daniel, 20, was in North Carolina. One day, St. Clair and her husband put two bumper stickers on the back of their van.

The first read, “My sons defend our freedom.” The second read, “Proud parent of a soldier.” They knew that by putting the stickers up they were opening themselves up to good and bad reactions, but St. Clair was proud and wanted to show it.

Still, nothing could have prepared her for what happened one day a short while later when she was finishing up her shift at the hair salon where she worked. As she approached her van, she saw something stuck to the windshield.

An Unexpected Note

As St. Clair drew closer, she realized there was a paper and what looked like a $20 note. Her first reaction was that it had to be a flyer or some other kind of ad. But when she pulled the note from the windshield, she was blown away. It was a handwritten note from a stranger who wanted to address the bumper stickers.

“I pray for our military around the world every night, especially those serving in dangerous areas or in one of our wars,” the note read. It also instructed St. Clair to send the money to her army soldier if they were in the Middle East, to spend it on a care or comfort kit, or to save it for their return. The note was signed by a woman named Shelley.

“I had to read it twice, and of course, I started crying,” she told Fox News at the time, as per Little Things. “That somebody took a moment out of their day to share some comfort, it was pretty amazing.”

Not only was she touched by the random act of kindness, but St. Clair said that it was well-timed. She had been worrying about her boys lately.

“I would like to just tell [Shelley] that her random act of kindness made an amazing impact at a time when it was needed,” she added.

The Power of Kindness

This stranger had no way of knowing how much St. Clair could have used a pick-me-up that day, but her random act of kindness made a huge difference. Such acts usually do, which is why it’s nice to practice them in our own lives.

Little surprises, notes, and gestures can go a very long way, especially since we never truly know what other people are going through.

Leading with kindness and trying to bring a smile to other people’s faces isn’t just a nice thing to do — it can unexpectedly give someone the strength to carry on.

So smile at that stranger, pick up that tab, send a little card, or bake someone a treat. You never know who may randomly need it.