Growing up with hardships can either devastate a family or bring them closer together. When the unforeseeable happens, it challenges individuals to overcome their obstacles and find support in their loved ones. It’s virtually impossible to walk away from a catastrophic event unscathed.
A family was put to the ultimate test after losing a vital member. A mother was left to care for two young children with few resources to help her raise her sons. The brothers sought comfort in one another and although only 22 months apart, the oldest brother, Bailey Leonard, took it upon himself to stand in as a father-figure for his younger brother, Meyers.
The boys were inseparable, having never been away from one another until Bailey joined the Marine Corps. Meyers was devastated when he learned the news. The idea of being apart from his brother, a person who had been a constant in his life, was unfathomable.
In 2012, while Meyers was a sophomore at the University of Illinois, Bailey gave him the most amazing surprise. It had been at least two years since he had watched his younger brother play basketball and so he showed up unannounced to a game.
Meyers was so focused on the upcoming match that he didn’t even notice his brother dressed from head-to-toe in his military uniform standing on the court. It wasn’t until Bailey called his name that he looked up and was astounded.
Meyers’ reaction was priceless. He didn’t know what to do. The amount of emotion that overcame the young man was truly special. When was the last time that you saw a young man cry? It’s a rare occurrence, but Meyers couldn’t hide how much he cared about his brother or how amazing it felt to have him standing in front of him.
What a remarkable bond that these two young men share.
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