INDIANA (CNN) – It is said no good deed goes unpunished, but a FedEx driver in Indiana is learning that at least some don’t go unrewarded.
He went out of his way to make a birthday special for a little girl he didn’t even know.
And her family found a way to say “thank you” for that.
Emma Paternoster turned 6 on Thursday, but her mom, Liz, had to change the party plans, celebrating instead at home.
“We were trying to do everything we could to make this as special as possible,” Liz Paternoser says.
So was Jodan Price, a FedEx delivery driver.
They had never met before.
He realized it was Emma’s birthday when he dropped off a stack of presents and returned later that day with Dairy Queen cupcakes.
“He felt bad that she would not have a birthday like everyone else,” Paternoser says. “He said ‘you know, if we were not in this situation, she’d be at school with friends’ and he just did what he could to make it a little more special.”
Emma’s reaction – priceless.
But at the time, the Paternosters didn’t know the driver’s name.
He left quickly and they wanted to thank him.
“I even stopped other FedEx delivery guys that I saw in the neighborhood (laughter) later that day, trying to figure out who he was,” Paternoser says.
A few thousand re-tweets later, Jodan’s son saw this video on Twitter.
His own re-tweet – “this is my dad” – racking up more than half-a-million likes.
The two families connected – and on tuesday Jodan stopped by the Paternosters’ home again.
This time, he was in for a surprise.
Signs saying “thank you” and calling him their hero.
“He really truly is a hero, they are so busy right now, and to still thank of others, those they don’t even know is inspiring,” Paternoser says.