Dying man left 14 years of Christmas presents behind for neighbor's young daughter until she turns 16
In February 2012, the retired diver lost his wife Beryl without any grandchildren. To keep himself occupied, Watson took up a series of hobbies and loved watching Cadi grow up
An elderly gentleman had secretly stashed away presents for his neighbor's daughter, whom he had watched grow up, to be given to her after he died.
The 87-year-old, Ken Watson from Barry, Vale of Glamorgan, personally wrapped up 14 presents for two-year-old Cadi Williams, in a touching gesture before his demise, so that they would last until she is 16 years old, Daily Mail reports.
In February 2012, the retired diver lost his beloved wife Beryl without any grandchildren. In a bid to keep himself occupied, Watson took up a series of hobbies and loved watching little Cadi grow up.
Our elderly neighbour passed away recently. His daughter popped round a few moments ago clutching a large plastic sack. In the sack were all the Christmas presents he’d bought for *our* daughter for the next thirteen years. 😢 pic.twitter.com/6CjiZ99Cor— Owen Williams 🏴 (@OwsWills) December 17, 2018
Ken's daughter Jenny discovered the bag of Christmas goodies just weeks after he died when she was cleaning out his home and proceeded to deliver them next door. Owen and Caroline Williams, Cadi's parents, couldn't hold back their tears when they saw the presents delivered Monday evening.
He said: "She was clutching this big bag plastic sack and I thought it was rubbish she was going to ask me to throw out. But she said it was everything her dad had put away for Cadi. It was all of the Christmas presents he had bought for her. I brought it back in and my wife was on FaceTime to her mum in Ireland. My wife started to tear up and I started to tear up, and her mum started to tear up."
Owen added: "It's difficult describing it because it was so unexpected. I don't know how long he put them away whether it was over the last two years or whether he bought them towards the end of his life."
Ken hoped to live until he was 100 years old to see Cadi grow up, he told his neighbors. The 87-year-old, who was a cook during his National Service at RAF Holton, previously ran and worked in his family's bakery business in Cardiff — The Watsons Bakery.
Our dog loved him. I mean, genuine visceral love. It was mainly due to the chocolate digestive biscuits he gave her on first meeting. She’d scream whenever she saw him. Really scream. Like a banshee. He’d call her “my darling” and “sweetheart”.— Owen Williams 🏴 (@OwsWills) December 17, 2018
This is her first meeting. pic.twitter.com/DoG1F8mprO
Owen compared the heartwarming gesture to a "plot from a Richard Curtis Christmas film" and said the family had already opened one of the presents out of excitement. It is a children's book titled 'Christmas Eve at the Mellops' by Tomi Ungerer.
"We can tell there's some books, there's three or four soft toys, maybe some Duplo," Owen said. According to Owen, Ken took up skydiving, wing-walking, and parachute jumping at the ripe age of 85.
We opened one. We couldn’t resist. pic.twitter.com/vlNaRjoFoE— Owen Williams 🏴 (@OwsWills) December 17, 2018
Speaking of the first time they met, Owen said: "We moved to the street three years ago and made a real point of going round and meeting all the neighbors. Ken wasn't in when we first called round, but the next day we heard some banging. I went out to investigate and there was Ken in navy overalls bouncing across the face of his house at the top of a 20ft ladder. He was 83 at the time. That just summed him up really."
He added: "Ken was a former salvage diver in the Severn Estuary, a seaman, carpenter, baker and he did an airplane wing walk when he was 85. On that first meeting, he gave our dog a chocolate biscuit. She absolutely loved him from that moment on. Really loved him passionately. She would shriek when she saw him, he was such a character."
Ken allegedly said parachute jumping made him feel like "an eagle", especially after his beloved wife's death. Speaking two years ago, he said: "After my wife had passed away I took a long time to settle. There's a space around me. I still hear her voice and speak to her. I began parachute jumping. I enjoy these sort of things, I feel the rush of the air. The second jump was the best. I thought 'gosh I'm an eagle'."
Ian, Ken's son, whose sister delivered the gifts to little Cadi, said: "I've known about this since before my father died. He was a very kind man. It is a lovely story and I would like to tell the world what a lovely guy he was."