Eight-year-old Myles Eckert did something unexpected after he found $20 in the parking lot of a Cracker Barrel near Toledo.

Myles entered the restaurant with his family, soon catching sight of a man in uniform. Lt. Col. Frank Dailey of the Ohio Air National Guard was also eating at Cracker Barrel that day and Myles decided the $20 should go to him.


“Because he was a soldier, and soldiers remind me of my dad,” Myles told CBS News in an interview.

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The boy wrapped the $20 in a note that read:

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. It’s your lucky day. Thank you for your service.

Myles Eckert, a Gold Star Kid

Army Sgt. Andy Eckert, Myles’ father, was killed in Iraq just after his birth.

Dailey said it was “incredible being recognized in such a manner” and that the gift provided “a lifetime direction.”

After their meal, the boy’s mom, Tiffany, said Myles wanted to visit his Dad’s grave by himself. Myles said he imagined his Dad to be “a really nice person and somebody that would be really fun.”