Fond du Lac, Wisconsin, widower Bud Caldwell had spent nearly 56 years with his beloved wife, Elizabeth “Betty” Caldwell. Betty’s widowed husband was so loyal to his late wife’s memory that he bought and dedicated a bench to her name when she passed away in 2013.
Caldwell drove to Lakeside Park every single day, no matter how bad the weather was, to talk with his wife and leave tokens of his enduring love. That was until one day, when Caldwell found himself unable to reach Betty’s bench.
According to WDJT, Caldwell said that these sweet, snatched moments with his late wife were the very best part of his day. The couple’s favorite songs were 1930s crooner Bing Crosby’s “Pennies from Heaven,” and Jud Strunk’s “Daisy a Day.” As such, Caldwell made sure to leave a single penny and a daisy for Betty on the bench every time he visited.
There’s really nothing to do at Lakeside Park in Fond du Lac, Wisconsin — at least not in the winter.So why then, for…
Caldwell kept up this routine for two years. Little did he know he was being watched.
In early 2015, Caldwell arrived at Lakeside Park to discover that Betty’s bench was no longer accessible; heavy snowfall had caused a snow bank to form, blocking the elderly man’s path.
WDJT reported that Caldwell, then 82, had slipped and fallen in the snow the previous year while trying to access the memorial bench. Erring on the side of caution, Caldwell stayed in his car and had his usual daily chat with his beloved Betty from the parking lot.
Two of Lakeside Park’s employees, who had grown familiar with the widower’s routine, were alerted by his absence that day. Jerrod Ebert and Kevin Schultz noticed Caldwell sitting in his car and put the pieces together; they knew exactly what they needed to do.
In Fond du Lac, Wisconsin, Jerrod Ebert and Kevin Schultz shovel clear a path everyday for one man who is devoted to bringing his wife a “daisy a day.” Steve Hartman reports.
“We have to make sure he can get to his bench and talk to his wife,” Ebert said to his colleague.
The two men took snow shovels to the path leading up to Betty’s bench. They quickly cleared a track so that Caldwell could reach his beloved and complete his daily ritual. Caldwell was moved by the impromptu act of kindness from the park employees.
“My knees about buckled on me,” Caldwell later admitted in an interview with CBS Evening News. “Totally unexpected.”
Ebert and Schultz were equally touched. They would, the two men vowed, keep the path to Betty’s memorial bench clear for Caldwell all winter long.
“For most people it’s a path to nowhere,” Ebert explained to CBS. “It’s a path to somewhere for one person. It took us both aback a little bit, thinking my gosh, his devotion is that strong that he still comes when he can’t make it to the bench, even.”
“Some intuition, be it divine or otherwise,” Ebert said, “says you know, this is why you’re here. To help one another.”
In moving footage, Caldwell approaches Betty’s bench, leaves a white daisy, and speaks to his sweetheart. “See you tomorrow, munchkin. Love ya,” Caldwell says. “Always did, always will.”
This Fond du Lac love story illustrates that true love is a force to be reckoned with. Occasionally, however, it might just need a little help from a snow shovel and a couple of good Samaritans.
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Author: Louise Bevan