OLATHE, Kan. — The holiday season isn’t merry for everyone.

Some people are coping with the loss of loved ones. Such is the case for one Johnson County family, whose members are thankful for the kindness of an Amazon delivery driver, who brought more than packages to their home.

One South Olathe driveway turned out to be a center of support for a grieving mom. Abby Tate was still grieving the loss of her father, who’d recently passed away from pancreatic cancer, and she never imagined an Amazon driver would be part of her system of coping.

“It was God sent. I said he’s like an angel,” Tate said on Friday.

That was November 7, one day after Tate’s father, Rodney Smith, had passed after a five-year battle with pancreatic cancer. Ironically, Tate was about to speak with a hospice chaplain, when Amazon driver Francisco Rodriguez III arrived, delivering the final package her father had ordered. It was enough to move Tate to tears.

“(Rodriguez)said, ‘I know exactly how you’re feeling. Let me pray this prayer of peace over you.’ I felt like it was a pastor or minister or priest praying over me,” Tate recalled.

Rodriguez said he found Smith’s home after driving around lost in that neighborhood, which sits near Spring Hill. He understood, because he was also grieving the loss of his own father, who’d died in 2021.

“She started crying and said this is the last package her father ordered. He just passed away yesterday,’ Rodriguez said in a video clip he recorded while parked in his delivery truck.

“It was that one little reason for me to pray for her. Today has been strange and so weird, but God is so good. There’s a purpose in everything.”

Tate said the delivery box itself was nothing special. She said it contained Clorox wipes. However, her husband, Derek Tate, believes the moment was heaven-sent.

“He felt the need and was compelled to share his moment with her, and go above and beyond. I just hope he’s rewarded in some way,” Derek Tate said.

“It was just the sweetest, most beautiful moment we had together,” Abby Tate said.

Tate said she’s love to reconnect with Francisco, to repay his kindness, and to let him know that during the season of Christmas, she’s praying for him as well.

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