Parenthood
Teen comes to cheerleader’s rescue when her dad can’t be there on Parents’ Day
Addie was in tears not having her military daddy there for the special event. But then out of nowhere, a teen stranger hopped the fence to save the day.
Patricia Lynn
01.10.22

Not only do men and women in the military risk their lives, but they also make many sacrifices when it comes to their loved ones. Some miss out on their children’s birthdays, while others miss major events like graduations and births.

Unsplash - Sir Manuel
Source:
Unsplash - Sir Manuel

Servicemembers that spend months or even years away from their families know exactly how hard this is. Whether they need to leave for training or they’re deployed, the impact on their families is the same.

There is certainly some imbalance when one of the parents is away for a long time, and it is certainly a hard-to-bear responsibility for the other parent.

Unsplash - Guillaume de Germain
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Unsplash - Guillaume de Germain

But what hurts the most is moments like the one in the following story, when you really wish your mom or dad was there, while your heart breaks to see other moms and dads be with their children.

Addie Rodriguez, 9 years old at the time, was a cheerleader for her school team. She took up cheerleading because she thought it was a fun activity to do after school, but also because she was looking for a distraction since her dad was in the Air Force, which means he was away from home very frequently.

YouTube Screenshot - Mike Bush
Source:
YouTube Screenshot - Mike Bush

“The hardest part was leave my family,” Addie’s dad, Abel Rodriguez said.

“I kept on asking my mom when was daddy gonna come home, and it was kind of hard for me” Addie explained.

With a lot of hard work and dedication, Addie became an excellent cheerleader for San Antonio’s Central Catholic School.

YouTube Screenshot - Mike Bush
Source:
YouTube Screenshot - Mike Bush

And, while every time she performed as a cheerleader made Addie happy, there was one particular day when cheerleading for her team made her especially sad.

One October day, Addie was cheering as always during the football game. Only it wasn’t an ordinary day, it was Parents’ Day.

YouTube Screenshot - Mike Bush
Source:
YouTube Screenshot - Mike Bush

This meant that parents were asked to join their children in the field and perform a trick with them. Although Alexis Perry, Addie’s mom was there for her, her dad was away for training with the military, which meant he couldn’t attend the game.

“The moms did a cheer with their daughters and I was there, so I smiled with her and took a picture and hugged her,” Alexis Perry, Addie’s mom, of San Antonio, Texas, told ABC News. “When I saw the dads lining up I said, ‘Oh my gosh. What am I going to do?'”

YouTube Screenshot - Mike Bush
Source:
YouTube Screenshot - Mike Bush

As Perry explained, the girls would recite the cheer and the dads would follow along with a trick and the girls would get picked up on their dads’ shoulders.

Sadly, Addie didn’t have anyone there to join her.

And that’s when the most amazing thing happened. A young man named Matthew Garcia jumped the fence and in just a few seconds he was next to Addie asking her if she wanted to do the trick with him.

YouTube Screenshot - Mike Bush
Source:
YouTube Screenshot - Mike Bush

“I ran down the bleachers and hopped down near the fence,” Garcia said. “I asked, ‘Do you mind if I pick you up?’ She said, ‘Yes.’ I turned and saw the crowd clapping.”

The young man was a high school senior and he went on to study cardiology at the university.

Although Garcia didn’t think he did something special, his gesture totally made Addie’s day.

YouTube Screenshot - Mike Bush
Source:
YouTube Screenshot - Mike Bush

After the game, Perry posted a photo of him on Facebook and wrote a thank-you post. A community member identified him and she could personally thank him.

While Addie would have done anything to have her daddy there in that moment – she’ll never forget the kind-hearted teen who came to her rescue.

Check out the video below to hear more about this very sweet story!

Please SHARE this with your friends and family.

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By Patricia Lynn
hi@sbly.com
Patricia Lynn is a senior writer at Shareably. Patricia is based out of San Francisco and can be reached at hi@shareably.net.
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