POPLAR BLUFF, MO (KFVS) - Care packages are on the way to service men and women in the Middle East thanks to a little boy who spoke up with a generous idea.
It all started last weekend at the demolition derby at the Butler County Fair Grounds when the announcer, Kevin Murray, asked people in the crowd if they would like to win $100.
Five-year-old Rydan Deckard was one of the first to speak up. Of course Rydan said he wanted to win the money, but it's what he wanted to do with it that touched everybody at the fairgrounds and inspired people to start handing over their cash.
You see, Rydan's dad, Ryan Deckard is a Navy Officer, stationed in the waters of the Middle East on the USS Comstock.
"He's deployed on a ship in the Navy," said Rydan.
Rydan's Mother, Danielle Deckard says the little boy is always so excited to get packages from his dad, and asking to send him something in return. So, for Rydan what happened at the Butler County Fair Grounds last weekend was only the logical thing to do.
"They announced asked if anybody wanted to win $100," said Danielle. "Rydan went up to the fence and said he did. The announcer asked why and he said because he wanted to send care packages to his dad."
Danielle says Murray, the announcer couldn't believe it.
"He paraded him around and said Rydan was breaking his heart!," said Danielle.
"I carried a box and everybody put money in it and I told them thank you," said Rydan.
In a matter of minutes, Rydan's unselfish gesture raised $727.
"It was just mindblowing," said Danielle. "He doesn't understand the magnitude of how many care packages we'll be able to come up with that much money."
Care packages are not only going to Rydan's daddy, but other service members as well.
"I just want to say how proud I am of my son for his ability to inspire people to give," Officer Ryan Deckard said over email. "The generosity of selfless Americans like those in Poplar Bluff make our job out here easier."
Rydan is the oldest of three. Mom has 19-month-old Presley, and 5-month-old Peyton to care for as well. The announcer, Kevin Murray, is Pastor of the Cowboy Christian Church in Piggot.
They are helping the family to assemble the care packages.
Five more go out Tuesday.