A group of strangers drove a woman and her two children 600 miles so she could attend her father’s funeral. Jelena Ma was attempting to fly from Detroit to New York City on June 29 when her flight was met with a five-hour delay.
Frustrated with her situation, Ma approached a group of stranger and asked for their help.
Speaking to Good Morning America, Zach Rotter said:
“While I was waiting in line to transfer my ticket to another flight, Jelena approached me to explain her situation. Her father’s funeral was the next morning at 9 a.m. in New York City. She wanted to drive there because the next flight to get into the city wasn’t until the following afternoon.”
Ma would have driven herself, but, after staying awake for several nights trying to arrange her dad’s funeral, she knew driving 614 miles on her own wouldn’t be a smart decision.
After a quick discussion, Zach and another woman in line, Leanne Falzon, agreed to rent a car and hit the road with Ma in tow.
Falzon explains, “There were people backed up in the airport for days to get to New York. We all had work we had to get to. As soon as she said she had an empty spot in the car, I talked to the ticket agent.”
Ma’s car was located in Ann Arbor so a friend picked up the group and drove them to her vehicle. At 10 pm, the group of strangers hit the road. Rotter says Ma drove for the first hour, and, once she got them to the right highway, they rotated driving duties. The mother of two even tucked her kids into the back of the car.
The strangers drove the woman and her children throughout the night, arriving in Chinatown at 8:36 am. The funeral took place just 24 minutes later.
The strangers who met under the most likely of circumstances snapped a quick photo and then went on their way.