An Arizona man is getting some quality time with his son thanks to the generosity of his boss, so he is paying it forward to her.
Beverly Eernisse is preparing for Ms. Senior Arizona. By day, Eernisse is the vice president of First Properties and has grown quite a reputation for helping her employees in need.
"You know, Beverly, she's just a kind individual. She is the VP of the company but she is much more than that. She's lighthearted. She's generous. And she just has a good outlook on life. And she looks out for the well being of other people," said First Properties employee Aaron Garcia.
Garcia knows that firsthand. When he was brand new with the company, his relationship was ending and he was fighting for visitation rights with his son.
The legal paperwork alone cost $700 he didn't have, but without even asking, Eernisse gave him a check.
"It was money well spent because I saw a young dad who was going to get to spend more time with his son, and that was important to me," Eernisse said.
"I didn't know what to say, I didn't know what to think. It definitely made me realize that there are kind people still left in the world, especially with everything that is going on, and I just knew that I would work hard to pay her back and return the favor," Garcia said.
He did pay her back, but Eernisse wouldn't accept the money and told him to put it in a college fund.
But Garcia never forgot her act of kindness and decided to surprise her with $500 through CBS 5's Pay It Forward program.
"I had written a letter to CBS 5 News because I wanted to show you my appreciation for how generous you are," Garcia told Eernisse. "You never ask for anything in return and I wanted to do something from the heart, so Beverly, I wanted to pay it forward."
"I have a very heavy heart right now. I'm just overwhelmed. It's always nice, I always feel like I do the right thing for them, but to know that they appreciate me that much is very special," Eernisse said.
Eernisse is thinking about retiring in April to spend more time devoted to charitable work.
"By helping others, you actually help yourself and you strengthen yourself. I like doing things for people," Eernisse said.
The Ms. Senior Arizona Pageant is March 22 at the Valley Vista Performing Arts Center in Surprise.
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