- The Washington Times - Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Eight-year-old Myles Eckert found $20 in a parking lot, but it didn’t last long. He gave the money to a soldier who reminded him of his father “in heaven.”

“I kind of wanted to get a video game, but then I decided not to,” the boy told CBS news of the money he found in a Cracker Barrel parking lot.

Instead, he gave it to Lt. Col. Frank Dailey of the Ohio Air National Guard’s 180th Fighter Wing. His reasoning: “Because he was a soldier, and soldiers remind me of my dad.”

Myles‘ dad, Army Sgt. Andy Eckert, was killed in Iraq shortly after the child was born. Miles imagines him as “a really nice person and somebody that would be really fun.”

Sgt. Eckert would be proud — his son wrapped the money in a note that said:

Myles Eckert (Image: CBS)
Myles Eckert (Image: CBS) more >

Dear Soldier,

My dad was a soldier. He’s in heaven now. I found this $20 in the parking lot when we got here. We like to pay it forward in my family. Today is your lucky day. Thank you for your service.

Myles Eckert, a gold star kid

Lt. Col. Dailey told CBS News that receiving the note was something he will remember for “a lifetime.”

That day, Myles had one more thing on his to-do list: he wanted to see his dad alone. His mother Tiffany managed to take a picture of him hugging his father’s gravestone.

Scott Pelley of CBS News says he believes Myles was telling his father all about his efforts to pay it forward.

Lt. Col. Dailey told CBS News he gave the money away and hopes the story will inspire others to give as well.