Young Man Struggles Caring For His Seven Kids, Until A Stranger Decides to Help

A person’s life is a total mystery we slowly unveil as time carries on. Unfortunately, a young pair never thought life would be unforgiving when one of them had a tragic accident.
Ream and Dakota Nelson got married in 2001 and they began a family of their own, with their first child being born. The next years, six more followed and the big family was happy. Until it all changed last summer…

Photo: Courtesy of Facebook / Dakota Nelson

24. An Unfortunate Moment

Photo: Courtesy of Facebook / Dakota Nelson

We can never guess what is bound to happen in the future, and when Ream and Dakota were around the garage, doing some chores, Dakota didn’t think it would be the last time he enjoyed his wife’s company.
Dakota left the garage for just a few minutes to clean outside the house. He returned a little bit later and saw his wife on the ground…

23. A Young Woman

Photo: Courtesy of GoFundMe / Summer Alameel

Ream was only 38 years old, and she had suffered a massive heart attack. She was rushed to the hospital, but a few months later she died.
Dakota was devastated, and although his life would never be the same, he had the support of his big family, and more.

22. That Fateful Day

Photo: Courtesy of Scribol

Ream’s sister Summer Alameel shared her story online on the fundraising website GoFundMe, where she talked about her sister and her family:
“One of the greatest privileges of my life has been to have Ream Nelson (Alameel) as a big sister. For those of you who are lucky enough to know her, you know of her kindness, strength, sense of humor and love for others. Ream is a mother to seven amazing children…”

21. The Best Mom

Photo: Courtesy of Getty Images

Summer carried on with her story, saying Ream wasn’t just the best mom, but she also coached volleyball girls and was always open to help anyone in need. Then, she said a few more words about her relationship with her husband, saying the two were a “match made in heaven.”
Fast forward to that terrible tragedy in the summer of 2018, Summer explained what happened to Ream.

20. Five Minutes Later

Photo: Courtesy of Meaningful Funerals

The young sister recalls that Ream had an unexpected heart attack the day when she was working with her husband in the garage. “She and Dakota had been working – but mostly playing – together in their garage when Dakota went outside to put some tools away. Dakota returned within five minutes to find Ream lying on the floor blue and not breathing.”

19. Calling the Ambulance

Photo: Courtesy of Meaningful Funerals

Dakota rushed to his wife and started performing CPR, while one of the kids called 911. The ambulance came and took her to the hospital. However, the brain was without oxygen for over 20 minutes, causing “a massive bleed that the doctors cannot explain and severe brain damage,” said Summer.
Ream was in a coma.

18. She Was Stable

Photo: Courtesy of Facebook / Ream Alameel Nelson

Although in a coma, physicians said Ream’s condition was stable. Dakota recalls the moments he saw his wife on the floor, explaining he was not the only one that witnessed the terrible moment:
“It is hard to accurately describe in words what it is like to have found my beautiful wife, whom I have fallen in love with and grown closer to in our 17 years of marriage on the floor, eyes open and unresponsive with our three-year-old standing over her. Having our children witness this is unthinkable.”

17. Doctors Were Hopeful

Photo: Courtesy of GoFundMe / Summer Alameel

Summer explained that the doctors anticipated the coma would last from three to six months, but because Ream was young, she could pull through. She would then improve in the next one or two year, although she might not fully recover.
Summer explained why she started the GoFundMe page, noting that neither Ream and Dakota have health insurance, and Dakota works three jobs to make sure his family is well provided for.

16. Everyone Was Waiting for Updates

Photo: Courtesy of Facebook / Ream Alameel Nelson

Summer set the target of $250,000 to make sure her sister’s hospital bills were covered, and in two months, users that donated were updated on Ream’s situation. But then, in September, an update brought terrible news…

15. Ream Nelson Passed Away

Photo: Courtesy of Facebook / Dakota Nelson

“It is with the heaviest of hearts and deepest sadness that we inform you that Ream Nelson passed away [on]September 23, 2018, at 3:45 p.m.,” Summer announced on GoFundMe. “She left this life surrounded by her husband, children, mother, mother-in-law and siblings.”
Although losing the most important person in the world, her husband and children held up remarkably thanks to their family and community support, added the younger sister. Now Dakota was the single father of seven children, all counting on him.

14. A Christmas Without You

Photo: Courtesy of Facebook / Ream Alameel Nelson

“We cannot choose how we go, but [Ream] went peacefully, surrounded by the people who loved her most in this world,” said Summer in the tragic news she shared on the fundraiser page. Now Dakota was a single father of a big family, facing one holiday without the woman he loved: Christmas.

13. Secret Santa

Photo: Courtesy of Facebook / Dakota Nelson

It would be a heartbreaking moment, knowing the person you lived with for 17 years was no longer there, celebrating every moment with you. Dakota was expecting all of that, but not the surprise he received in December from Secret Santa!

12. Looking Back on The Widower’s Heartbreaking Story

Photo: Courtesy of Facebook / Ream Alameel Nelson

Dakota had no idea he’s going to receive a massive surprise in December. The website East Idaho News planned it all, and reporter Nate Eaton prepared a special video, including Dakota’s heartbreaking story.

11. Part-Time Teacher

Photo: Courtesy of Scribol

“Now he is a part-time seminary teacher with the LDS Church. He also has two other part-time jobs, and he’s doing the best he can to raise his kids,” explained Nate. Then, he revealed that his family was selected to receive the Secret Santa present from the website, which included not just $2,000 in gift cards, but also an $8,000 check!
Meanwhile, Dakota had no idea he was being followed by Nate and the filming crew.

10. A Snowy December Day

Photo: Courtesy of YouTube / East Idaho News

Dakota was in a car park with his kids, when Nate approached him and tried to catch the man’s attention with an impromptu interview that led to the man’s loss. After they talked about it, Eaton took out a gift box and gave it to Dakota. The man was stunned…

9. A Huge Check

Photo: Courtesy of YouTube / East Idaho News

After receiving the Secret Santa gift box which was filled with gift cards, Eaton hands the man a check and when Dakota sees the figure, he bursts into tears. The reporter also gets all teary and hugs the widower.
But this is not how the story ends!

8. A Viral Video

Photo: Courtesy of YouTube / East Idaho News

The video filmed by East Idaho News was shared on the website’s official YouTube channel and in just a few days, it got over a million views, with more than 20,000 likes and 3,300 comments from people all over the world crying when they heard Dakota’s story, and offering messages of support.
Days later, Dakota reached back to Secret Santa with a letter…

7. A Strong and Great Dad

Photo: Courtesy of YouTube / East Idaho News

One of the people watching this video said Dakota is “such a strong and great dad. Respect. Seven children is such a big effort for a single man. Three part-time jobs? Bravo dad.”
The widower was too emotional to thank the anonymous donor, but he wrote a letter a few days later which said the following.

6. “The Best Time They Had in a Hard Time”

Photo: Courtesy of Meaningful Funerals

The message was sent to the anonymous donor and it then reached the East Idaho News website.
“It is hard to write this as I am at a total loss of words. There is no way for me to accurately convey how grateful we are for this kindness. As I was surprised with the gifts, I looked at my kids – who will remember this event forever as the best time they had in a hard time.”
He continues…

5. Blessed With Kindness

Photo: Courtesy of Scribol

“I have noticed that through this ordeal, we have been blessed to see kindness replace the pain of losing a loved one whom I had been married to for 17 years. My children have noted this, and have stated that they want to do the same for others,” wrote Dakota.
After a few more words to thank the Secret Santa, the father asked his children to write their own letters!

4. Confusing News

Photo: Courtesy of GoFundMe / Summer Alameel

“Thank you so much for all the joy you brought to us,” wrote Micaiah Nelson, explaining he “had basketball that day, but when my brother told me we were on the news, I was pretty confused.” He then saw the video his father showed him and said it brought tears to his eye. “This will probably be my best Christmas ever,” he added.

3. Getting Help

Photo: Courtesy of Meaningful Funerals

The oldest child in the family, Ammon Nelson, wrote in his letter that it meant a lot for the family, and they’re very happy for this gift: “It is so special to know that even our family in a small little town is being helped this Christmas season.”

2. Summer’s Fundraiser

Photo: Courtesy of Facebook / Ream Alameel Nelson

Summer’s GoFundMe fundraiser continued to receive more donations starting with the day she set it up, and nearly 650 people were able to contribute, reaching a sum of over $55,000! In July, 2019, Ream’s sister updated the contributors that the family is doing well.

1. Supporting Good People

Photo: Courtesy of Facebook / Dakota Nelson

It’s obvious Dakota deserves all the kindness in the world. He needs all the help he can get, considering he’s a father of seven, ranging from toddler to teenager. He’s fortunate his children are by his side and together with the help of the family, community, and strangers; they’re able to go through these difficult times.

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