Ken Watson’s final gift will keep on giving for years. The two-year-old girl who made Ken so happy will remember him forever.
The man in this story was in many ways a typical sweet old man, while also being a completely unique soul.
Ken Watson was a Welshman with a big heart.
He spent almost all of his life living in the town of Barry in the Vale of Glamorgan. He had a range of interesting and exciting jobs throughout this time.
For example, he was at one time a salvage diver and worked in the UK’s military air force (the RAF).
But the Williams family, who moved in next door to Ken, only knew him in his final years.
Ken was 83 years old when they moved in.
They soon realized that though their neighbor was elderly, he was full of the spirit of adventure. The first time the family encountered Ken, he was on the top of a 20 foot ladder.
He also enjoyed pushing himself to the limit. Ken completed at least three parachute jumps in his eighties and, once that got boring, took up wing walking.
He had a range of interesting hobbies, including playing the accordion and searching for treasure with a metal detector.
But then, a tragedy struck Ken. His wife, the love of his life, died.
He became more lonely than he’d ever been. He would lock himself away in his home for days on end.
The Williams family, concerned about their neighbor’s wellbeing, decided to spend more and more time in his presence.
Owen and Caroline Williams, would often go round. Ken became like another family member to the Williams.
And then one day, Caroline Williams announced to Ken that she was pregnant. Ken was overjoyed. He’d raised two kids himself. But not only were they now fully grown. So were their children. It had been many years since he’d taken care of a baby, and he was loving the prospect of spending time with the new addition to the family.
Cadi was born two years ago, and Ken formed a strong connection with the baby. She reminded Ken of her own daughter so, so much.
But as Cadi was growing into a toddler, Ken was growing weaker.
He could tell that he hadn’t long left to live. But he really wanted to know Cadi as she grew up.
Ken, the man behind so many incredible stunts, decided to do one last thing that would outshine them all.
A few weeks ago, Ken passed away.
But then Ken’s daughter arrived a few days before Christmas, with something strange.
She had a giant sack filled with presents. Ken’s daughter then explained that Ken had spent his last days buying and wrapping these presents.
Ken had always said that he would live to 100. As he grew weaker in 2018, he realized that this would not come to pass. But through these presents, he was doing something that would allow a part of him to live to that age.
Ken’s intention was for Cadi to open one present every Christmas for the next 14 years, until Cadi was 16, until the year that he would have been 100.
Touched by this gesture, Owen Williams took to Twitter. The response online was huge. Millions of people now know how incredible Ken Watson was.
But Owen had a problem. None of the wrapped presents had any indication of which year they should be opened in.
Clearly, some presents would be intended for a teenager, while some would be for a young child. So Owen asked Twitter whether or not they should open all the presents for Christmas 2018 (but then rewrap them.)
Twitter users overwhelmingly voted for the family to open one per year, as Ken wanted. They’d just have to hope that the presents matched up.
So for Christmas 2018, they opened the first of the 14 presents. It was a children’s book named Christmas Eve at the Mellops’.
Owen and Caroline are sure to read the book to their daughter every Christmas.
It will take another 13 years to see what all the other presents are. No one knows what Ken Watson left for Cadi.
Hopefully, Ken Watson’s last act of kindness can inspire others to do things to make people’s lives better and much more magical.
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ACT OF KINDNESS: Before he died, an elderly man bought 14 years worth of Christmas presents for his 2-year-old neighbor – so she'll be able to unwrap a new gift from him every year until she's 16 🎁❤️️https://cbsn.ws/2Eri16h
Posted by CBS News on Tuesday, December 18, 2018
Source: CBS News