Lee Ballantyne, a grieving widower, decided to buy a young couple their dinner and then left them a charming note explaining that he’d done so because they reminded him of his recently deceased wife.
Ballantyne lost his wife of 43 years, Carol, to lung cancer on December 30.
On Tuesday he was dining alone for the very first time since her death at a restaurant in his home town of Barrie, Ontario, when he spotted the young couple.
As he gazed over at the duo enjoying their meal he was reminded of his wife.
After careful consideration he then decided to pay for their meal, and left them a note that explained why he had done so.
Ballantyne’s note read, “Hi! You don’t know me, but my beautiful wife of 43 years died last week. Tonight I dined alone for the first time. You remind me of us many years ago. Please allow me to buy your dinner. Enjoy! It will put a smile on Carol’s face and make me happy… for now. Happy new year!”
You can check out an image of his note below:
The story started to spread across the Internet after Reddit’s Turboturtle08 uploaded a picture of the napkin to the social media website.
The user noted that his friend actually owned the restaurant where the incident took place, and after asking the unnamed couple if he could tell the world about Ballantyne’s generosity he created a post explaining what had transpired.
However, some Reddit members actually questioned whether the tale was true. This lead Ballantyne’s son, Jason, who uses the website under the name, Axe34, to prove that it all took place.
Jason wrote, “I know this won’t convince those who don’t want to believe it could be true but here’s the deal. Mom died on Dec. 30. Dad went to dinner last night [Tuesday] and then told me this morning about what he did. A friend sent us the link to the photo that had been uploaded here. It’s all true. That’s my dad’s abysmal handwriting.”
Jason even posted a link to his own personal blog, which he has used to examine his feelings regarding his mother’s death, as well as a link to his mom’s obituary.
He continued, “I’m posting a link in the hopes it might help some of those so quick to dismiss the loss of a loved one see that not only is the story true but it’s about real people dealing with a devastating loss.”