Slade Thompson, of upstate Pennsylvania, waited patiently for his new friend, registered nurse Annie Hager. Thompson came to UPMC Health Susquehanna Health in nearby Williamsport last month to get his tonsils out. It was his second surgery this year.
"He's been through a lot this last year," Slade's mother, Layla Thompson, told the media. "We had been in the children's hospital, so we were kind of nervous just going to a hospital to have it done."
The day of surgery came, and things went well. Slade's mom was in the waiting room.
"They came out and said, 'He's awake,' and we thought, 'Oh, my goodness,'" Thompson said.
But before mom could go back to see Slade, a team of nurses had to check her son's vitals.
"When I told him mom couldn't be there until they finished checking him, he asked if I would snuggle him and I said, 'Sure will,'" said RN Annie Hager at UPMC hospital.
That single act of kindness made Thompson's concerns for her son disappear.
"You want someone to treat your child the way you would treat them, you know, so whenever I turned the corner and saw them, I went, 'Aww!' We both started getting a little teary-eyed," Thompson recalled.
She snapped a photo went “viral” on social media.
"Anyone that works up there would have done the same thing," Hager said.
When Slade and his mom came back for another appointment they brought a gift: flowers and a hug for their new friend.
"I cried, yeah," Hager said. "It's humbling."
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