Chicago Cubs set to salute the troops Tuesday night at Wrigley Field

(Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)
(Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images) /
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Chicago Cubs
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Chicago Cubs: It’s the little moments that matter most

There was a young soldier in the U.S. Army, a Cubs fan, who had gone to college but signed up to defend his country when the Gulf War began. The Army shipped him from Chicago to basic training. After some schooling and training, he finally arrived at his unit.

His paychecks began to arrive regularly but they didn’t amount to much. In fact, he had made more money making pizza at the local fast food joint. He hadn’t volunteered for the money but like anyone else, he had bills that ate his paycheck and left him with little.

He was in the Army and earning a steady paycheck but broke most of the time. He took the bus into town one day to wire money to his parents who had been paying his bills. He literally had just about five dollars to his name. Feeling pretty hungry, he stopped in McDonald’s to get a quick bite to eat. When he saw he had minimal funds, he decided to just order a drink. He was worried he wouldn’t have enough money for the bus ride back to the barracks.

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As he waited to place his order, he looked over the menu closely to see if he could afford anything else, any of the bargain menu food. There was one older woman in front of him placing her order so he continued to scan the bright hanging menu looking for a sale. As he looked over all the value choices, it just made him hungrier. Then he heard the woman in front of him, ordering her lunch say, “And I’d like to buy the soldier’s lunch; whatever he wants.”

The soldier couldn’t believe it.

It was the spirit of America.

In that second, it was the most amazing gesture which left the young man nearly speechless. He looked up bashfully to the woman and said, “Thank you so much, Ma’am…”

The lady said, “No, thank you for your service.”

There was no way for the lady to know that this young soldier was hungry and didn’t have enough money for a meal. She thanked him because that was the least she could do to say how grateful she was for his service and helping keep America free.