A South Portland, Maine Family Invited Total Strangers to Their Family Thanksgiving
It started off as a very innocent post in the Portland, Maine group on Facebook. Not asking for favors, just asking to be pointed in the right direction.
And what happened as a result was the most heartwarming, pure Maine-hearted thing ever.
Portland, Maine Thanksgiving Meals
With just one week to go until turkeys across the country are cooked, carved, and devoured, South Portland resident Rebecca Johnson posted a question on the Facebook group dedicated to Portland, Maine about where to find Thanksgiving dinners.
Hello Portland wanted to ask if anyone knows places where we can get a Thanksgiving meal on Thanksgiving Day like a church or what it costs to order one to go? [I'm] in my last trimester & it would be helpful for our family to either get a couple meals to heat at home or have a meal before my husband goes to work. Any leads are appreciated.
To no surprise, a bunch of Portlanders responded to Rebecca's post with links for pre-order and dine-in options for Thanksgiving, as well as what communities are offering free Thanksgiving meals.
And then a fellow South Portland resident, Gene Willard, responded to Rebecca's post and changed the entire game.
Gene invited Rebecca and her family to his family's Thanksgiving festivities.
Can you make it to South Portland? Your family is invited to my home.
It seemed like Rebecca appreciated the offer, but was leaning on the side of passing, mentioning that while she's also in SoPo, her husband was working and she's 9 months pregnant with two children under 8, so it would be tough.
But Mainers are stubborn, especially when they're trying to do good, and Gene didn't let up, but also wasn't applying pressure. After mentioning that Thanksgiving is a time to connect, he invited Rebecca to have her husband join everyone else at his home later, as there would be plenty of room.
As much as some people (myself included) consider social media the absolute downfall of society, it has its bright, shining moments in instances like this. Whether or not Rebecca and her family join Gene's for Thanksgiving, there's no doubt that even the mere, selfless act of the invite was more than enough for Rebecca.
Sometimes it's the most simple acts that bring the most warmth.