You can’t help but smile (and maybe shed a tear) at some of the heartwarming ways strangers have given back to those who have fought for their country.

Surprise donor


John Branson noticed Edgar Roberts’ Vietnam marine cap in a local Cracker Barrel. The veteran was sitting alone, so Branson shared a meal with the 70 year old and chatted about his son, who was getting ready to graduate from the Naval Academy. Over the course of the conversation, Roberts explained he had been on dialysis for five years after losing both his kidneys to cancer. After the two parted ways, Branson got tested and found out he was an organ match, and offered to donate his kidney to Roberts. They hope to do the life-saving surgery in May, according to Fox59. Try one of these 30 acts of kindness you can do in under two minutes.

Big money


Army veteran John Neely had been a member of Gateway Church in Shelbyville, Tennessee, for about 13 years, but lately he’d been too sick to attend services often. He’d had Parkinson’s disease for about four years and was diagnosed with throat cancer in January 2017 (These are 6 signs of throat cancer you might miss.). But when his pastor convinced him to try to make it to a service one Sunday, he made the trip. During the service, he was invited onstage and surprised with a $19,460 check for his medical expenses. The funds were raised at an auction through Josh Lynch of Athena Broadband, according to the Times-Gazette.

“The Good Cemeterian”

tombstonesEyeLights West/Shutterstock

After veterans pass away, a tombstone might be the only thing left honoring them. But after decades of mold, mildew, and weather damage, those gravestones can be nearly impossible to read. Bothered that veterans’ final resting places were under decaying stones, Andrew Lumish decided to do something about it. The owner of a specialty upholstery and carpet cleaning business took his cleanup talents to the cemetery. Now he spends his Sundays—his only day off—cleaning veterans’ headstones in Tampa, Florida. “If they can’t read it at all, they can’t celebrate it, they can’t honor that person, they can’t appreciate that person,” Lumish told CBS News. You can check out the before-and-after shots on his Facebook page, The Good Cemetarian.