During a funeral procession for a family member who passed away, while riding along in a car, this woman noticed a man on the side of the road, standing at attention. But what he was doing made her burst into tears.
Shelby Sams, of Kalamazoo, Michigan, lost her dear grandfather, Phillip “Paw Paw” Dooley Sr., to cancer on Nov. 26, 2017, the Sunday after Thanksgiving. Dooley, who had battled cancer for several years, was a Vietnam war veteran who was dearly loved by friends and family.
On Nov. 30, 2017—the day of the funeral—the procession was 30 cars long, traveling from Langeland Memorial Chapel in downtown Kalamazoo, Michigan, to the Fort Custer National Cemetery in Battle Creek.
There is no law that requires one to stop and let the procession pass. Many do move to the side of the road, while others still choose to speed along. So imagine Sams’s surprise when she saw one driver doing something completely different.
The man parked his car as the procession went by, but he also got out to stand. While the procession passed him, he bowed his head in respect.
To the man that gave respect to my PawPaw as we passed by on the way to Ft. Custer I want to say thank you. This lifted…
“There was a man who actually got out of his car, stood by his driver side door with his head bowed and his hands clasped in front of him for the entire procession,” Sams said.
Upon seeing such a sight, Sams and Courtney Steffler, her sister, started to cry. His respectful gesture was very moving.
“It was the greatest gesture of respect that I’ve ever seen,” Steffler told Local12.
A photo of the man was captured by Garrick Dooley, Dooley’s grandson, who posted it on Facebook. The family hope to find him so they can say thank you.
Garrick wrote on his Facebook: “My Grandfather was a simple man. He worked harder than anybody I’ve ever met—he loved even harder. This photo of the man showing respect, speaks volumes. It’s very rare to see in today’s society. To the man that gave respect to my PawPaw as we passed by on the way to Fort Custer, I want to say thank you. This lifted up many lowered heads today.”
Sams also echoed the same sentiments.
“I just want to say thank you. I’d like to take him to dinner and buy him ice-cream that’s what my ‘Paw Paw’ would have done,” Sams said.