This classic Pay it Forward was originally published on June 20, 2018.
YUKON, Okla. (KFOR) – Jameson Reeder is only four-years-old, but his dream has already come true.
Jameson has a fascination with trash trucks.
“Every single Thursday when he starts hearing them outside, he’s like, ‘Mom, come on, let’s go!'” said Jameson’s mom, Samantha.
Jameson has always wanted to see the inside of a trash truck, and that happened thanks to two Yukon Waste Management employees who decided to stop after seeing a little guy waving to them from the driveway of his Yukon home.
What Andrew Huff and Riquo Smart did not realize when they stopped was that Jameson was recovering from cancer.
He had spent the past 18 months undergoing chemotherapy treatment for a benign tumor the size of a lemon in his brain.
“We noticed that his eye was starting to drift outward,” said Samantha. “It was overwhelming.”
Surgeons were able to remove most of the tumor, but removing all of it would mean that Jameson would lose his vision.
Doctors also placed a shunt in his brain to help drain excess brain fluid brought on a by different and life-long condition called hydrocephalus.
It had been a load road for little Jameson, so what might have been a small gesture to some was monumental for the Reeder family.
“It was just something that, they had no idea the impact they would have on us, and it really, it was really touching,” Samantha said.
Smart and Huff felt the need to stop when they saw Jameson’s excited little face, and gave him a tour of the trash truck, along with smashing the recyclables in the back, as Jameson watched with a look of complete awe.
“He was so excited, he kept referring to them as his new best friends that day,” Samantha said.
That is why Jameson’s mom nominated Smart and Huff for a $400 Pay It 4Ward award from First Fidelity Bank.
Waste Management helped News 4 set up the surprise, by telling the men to return to Jameson’s home.
When the roar of a giant trash truck stopped in front of Jameson’s house, he flew out the front door, yelling at the top of the his lungs, “Hi!”
Samantha handed each man $200, saying, “I nominated you guys because it made our day. It was something you didn’t have to do, and it means so much whenever people are generous by the kindness of their hearts.”
“Making his day, it really feels good. A warm spot inside,” Huff said.
“It really touched my heart because my mother, as well, she just underwent chemotherapy,” Smart said.
The men gave Jameson another look at his future career.
But Jameson doesn’t just want to be a trash truck driver – he plans to be a the world’s only T-Rex dinosaur that drives a trash truck.
When asked how he will fit in the driver’s seat, Jameson replied, “Because dinosaurs don’t put their tails in there.”
He says he will hang his tail out the window, and because his T-Rex arms will be short, he plans to drive with his feet.
“My dream come true,” Jameson said.
UPDATE: Two years later, KFOR checked in with the Reeder Family. They say Jameson is in first grade now and is happy and healthy. He still needs MRI scans every six months to make sure everything stays in check, but so far so good!
Pay It 4Ward is sponsored by First Fidelity Bank.