I Don't Care Who You Are, This Will make You Cry...We Let A Stranger In Our House...And A Friend Into Our Hearts

Reblogger Missy Caulk
Real Estate Broker/Owner with Missy Caulk TEAM

This is the most touching story I have read on Activerain in forever. Thanks to Elizabeth for reblogging it and now I am. 

Heading to my  home town this week for a wedding and I had already thought about going to see if I could walk through my home I grew up in, in Paducah, Ky. 


Original content by John McCarthy

I Don't Care Who You Are, This Will make You Cry...We Let A Stranger In Our House...And A Friend Into Our Hearts

In early July, I admit, we did something most people would consider a very foolish thing. We let a total stranger in our house.

It was a Sunday morning and my Chris and I were about to pull out of the driveway on our way to find breakfast at a yet to be determined restaurant, when I noticed a car was pulling over to the side of the road opposite our driveway. I asked Chris to roll down her window as I expected the solitary gentleman in that car might have a question or perhaps need directions.

"Do you live here?" the fortyfive-ish stranger asked,
"Yes we do," Chris replied.
"This is the house where I grew up," he said. "Could I visit for a minute. I won't take much of your time. I can see you are on your way out."
With that, I stepped out of the car and said, "Why don't you pull into the driveway and get your car off the road."

In the next minute, we were shaking hands in the driveway and he introduced himself as Pete Martin. He asked if the Kelleys still lived next door and pointed to the second floor bedroom that was his and described how the chimney ran right up through the middle of the room. I asked if he would like to tour our home. He happily agreed.

As we passed through each room, Pete shared some little memory about the room and about the house and asked if the lilacs were still behind the house where he had buried his much loved dog. I showed him that the lilacs, and most likely his dog, had been relocated to another part of the yard to make room for the pool that we now enjoy. Through this stroll down memory lane, Pete shared a bit about his life.

Pete told us he had retired from a military career in the Air Force and now lived in Tennessee. After over twenty years of service, he was still not ready to give up flying and serving our country, so he became a Government contractor flying special operations forces in combat missions over Afghanistan, and tomorrow, he would be on a plane going back there and not returning until September.

Out of pure coincidence, he was visiting a friend in Londonderry, NH and asked if he could borrow his car to drive over to North Hampton in the hope we might be home when he knocked on our door. He had made this drive some years earlier, and we were not home. :-(

When we finished the tour of the house, Pete asked us if we could take a few pictures of him with his mobile phone and we took a few with our camera. We exchanged email addresses to stay in touch. As he was getting ready to leave, Pete made it clear, that by inviting him, a total stranger, into our home, we had given him something he something he would never forget. We had given him, the WORLD....and yesterday, well, he turned around and gave it back to us, in a way I know I will never forget.

While I was at my first showing yesterday, Chris called me on my cell and told me we had received a package from Afghanistan from Pete. I could not get home fast enough from the showing.

Seated at the kitchen table, Chris handed me the package and asked me to open it. Inside, was an American Flag, a copy of the Stars and Stripes daily newspaper published for members of the military, a copy of the July 2011 edition of Freedom Watch Afghanistan magazine and the following letter and special presentation:

Letter From Pete Martin
Special Presentation

Pete on Front Stairs

Now, most of you know I am a Pease Greeter at Pease AFB in Portsmouth, NH, welcoming our troops home from duty or sending them overseas to Iraq or Afghanistan. If you enjoy freedom, thank someone in the military. Maybe you could stop by Pete Martin's Facebook page and thank him. I know that's where I'm headed as soon as I publish this blog.

If you would like to know why I chose Seacoast New Hampshire to make my home, click here to email me, and I can make a real convincing argument for you to choose it too! Or, if you would like to do your own home search, sign up NOW on my website for our exclusive Home Scout Program.

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Cindy Edwards
RE/MAX Checkmate - Johnson City, TN
CRS, GRI, PMN - Northeast Tennessee - 423-677-6677

That touched my heart.  Missy, as you know the home I grew up in is in A2.  1715 Chandler street.  It was on the market a couple years ago and the Realtor had an open house.  My sister went and told the Realtor who she was.  She then put Karen (my sis) in touch with the owners and they shared many stories.  It was really special.  Karen took many photos as well and a lot of the original house was the same.  My father had built the addition on the back and it was really fun seeing pictures.  Thanks for sharing.

Aug 15, 2011 12:35 PM #1
Joe Woutersz
HUNT Real Estate ERA - Queensbury, NY

I loved the story.  It is wonderful to think that hospitality and humaness is still alive.  I would love for the world to trust people once again,  and for people to believe in each other. 

Aug 15, 2011 12:55 PM #2
Sheldon Neal
Bergen County, NJ - RE/MAX Real Estate Limited - Maywood, NJ
That British Agent Bergen County NJ

Heartwarming story. Very worthy of a reblog. It's amazing how we can touch some peoples lives with simple acts of grace and kindness. What an honor John had receiving that wonderful package.


Aug 15, 2011 02:39 PM #3
Colleen Fischesser Northwest Property Shop
RE/MAX Advantage | Managing Broker - Chelan, WA
A Tradition of Trust in the Pacific NW since 1990!

Wow wow wow. Thanks for reblogging Missy. I loved this story and may reblog myself. I've often thought about going back to visit my childhood home. I can only imagine how moving it would be to actually walk through it again. Great story!

Aug 15, 2011 02:57 PM #4
Lou Ludwig
Ludwig & Associates - Boca Raton, FL
Designations Earned CRB, CRS, CIPS, GRI, SRES, TRC


Real estate is far more then selling houses. It about people, memories of specials moments. A very touching story and a special moment in someones life.

Good luck and success.

Lou Ludwig

Aug 15, 2011 03:45 PM #5
Anja Kerstens
Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage - Morgan Hill, CA
GRI, CDPE, CHS, ASP, Selling Silicon Valley Real

Missy, the is an a beautiful blog indeed.  I am so glad you shared John's inspiring story with us here on ActiveRain.

morgan hill real estate

Aug 15, 2011 04:19 PM #6
Ellie Penaranda
239.776.5077 Downing-Frye Realty - Naples, FL
Naples Florida Real Estate - Waterfront & Beach Co

Missy, so glad you shared this with us... beautiful story, extremely touching. 

Aug 15, 2011 04:42 PM #7
Rick Sergison
EXP Realty of Canada Inc., Brokerage - Pickering, ON
Durham Region Real Estate Blog

What a truly wonderful and heart warming story!  Made me feel patriotic - and I'm a Canuck! (Who grew up in Detroit in the 60's. GO BLUE!!!!!)

Aug 24, 2011 04:06 AM #8
Connie Harvey
Pilkerton Realtors - Brentwood, TN
Realtor - Nashville TN Real Estate

Missy, what a great post to reBlog. We haven't talked in ages, I hope you're doing well! How's business for you?

Aug 24, 2011 09:33 AM #9
Kim & Kristine Halverson
Compass - Santa Monica, CA
Sisters, Realtors

Hi Missy,I really enjoy reading all your blog.This blog is really inspiring.I wish everyone would be like this.It's amazing how someone can touch some peoples life.I hope people would learn to be kind and to trust one another. Great post.Keep up the Good work and stay on top as Ann Arbor Short Sale Agent. 

Apr 02, 2012 01:38 AM #10
Petra Norris
Lakeland Real Estate Group, Inc. - Lakeland, FL
Realtor, Lakeland FL Homes for Sale

Hi Missy,this is a heart warming story.I am glad that you get to experience this.Thank you also for keeping us update with your life.Best of luck to you and stay the number one Ann Arbor Short Sale Agent. 

Apr 20, 2012 06:15 AM #11
Katerina Gasset
Get It Done For Me Virtual Services - Wellington, FL
Get It Done For Me Virtual Services

Hi Missy,what an inspiring story.It's nice to know that there are good people you can trust. I hope everything is well with you ,stay being number one Ann Arbor Short Sale Agent. 

Apr 22, 2012 12:50 AM #12
Jayne Clement
Keller Williams Realty - Los Feliz, CA
Los Angeles Short Sale Agents

What a good blog Missy,really sets a good example for us.This is such a blessing,I'm glad I got to read this.Best of luck to you and stay being top Ann Arbor Short Sale Agent. 


Apr 24, 2012 12:03 AM #13
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Savvy Realtor - Ann Arbor Real Estate
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