Flying with a newborn turned into a stressful nightmare for one dad, Rubin Swift, after he was stopped at the gate by an airline agent. The agent would not let him board the plane with the baby.
The dad was trying to board a Frontier Airlines flight at Phoenix airport. He was horrified to learn that he couldn't board the plane with his infant daughter, Ru-Andria.
Rubin Was Awarded Custody Of His Newboarn Daughter In Arizona
Rubin is 43, and he hails from Cleveland, Ohio. When he was informed that he had just gotten a baby girl in Arizona and that custody had been awarded to him, he immediately set off on the journey to go and take the girl to bring her home.
He found the girl at Banner University Medical Center, where he also met Joy Ringhofer, 78.
Ringhofer is an NICU volunteer. The young girl had been transferred to NICU after she was born as a precaution.
Joy Ringhofer Was Recently Widowed
Joy was moved by Rubin's willingness to step into the challenging role and take the infant child home with him.
This was not his first child, as he has three grown children from a previous marriage. He also has four step-kids with his wife, Tiffany.
Out of nowhere, Joy decided to write down her number and give it to Rubin. This unexpected decision came as a shock to him.
The NICU Volunteer Also Offered To Drive Him To The Airport
On the day he was scheduled to leave, Joy went a step further and volunteered to take him to the airport.
It was while there that it turned out that Rubin could not leave with his daughter after all. He needed to prove how old she was, and the airline has a policy that demands that infants have to be at least seven days old to be allowed to fly.
Obviously, once Rubin got to the airport and was told he could not fly, he had no idea what decision to make. He gave some thought to sleeping on the airport floor for days while waiting to get her birth certificate.
The hospital had informed him that he would need at least seven days to get her birth certificate. However, the worst thing for him was that he had already used up all his money.
Although sleeping at the airport was the only option that seemed viable to him, he knew that it might result in his baby being taken away. Rubin could also end up being charged with child neglect.
In other words, Rubin had run out of options.
Even after trying to reach out to his wife Tiffany, she had no way of helping him deal with his problem.
There Was No Money To Rent A Car And Drive Home
Since he had no money, he could not get a car or even reserve a hotel room. He called his wife and told her that he could not fly until he got a birth certificate.
However, he was given just four days by the airline to sort out the issue. His lack of options scared him because nothing seemed like it would work in his favor.
However, he remembered how kind Joy had been to him and got in touch with her. The NICU volunteer had, after all, given him a free ride to the airport.
Rubin was desperate to think that Joy, a senior citizen, could help him out of his situation. He explained the problems he had run into while at the airport to her.
Joy immediately offered him an answer that would make his situation many times better. She informed him that she would take him home.
As far as she was concerned, Rubin had been polite and kind, and she could tell he was a good person. So, she was willing to take the risk of going all out to help the stranger.
Joy's Reaction Surprised The Stranded Dad
Back home, Rubin runs a deli. He was taken aback by Joy's generosity and willingness to help him and his daughter:
"I'm black and she is white. I'm a stranger who grew up in the projects in the Bronx and she's a great-grandmother who recently lost her husband."
Rubin noted how little the woman knew about him, and yet she was willing to take a chance on him. She did not make race an issue and proved to him that the world is still full of compassion.
He immediately got in touch with his wife to tell her that Joy had decided to bend over backward to help him and his daughter Ru-Andria. Tiffany was quite shocked as well.
Of course, given his desperate situation, Rubin quickly took Joy up on her offer. He, too, had a good feeling about her.
Joy Was Like An Angel, She Quickly Bonded With Ru-Andria
To Rubin, Joy was an angel. She also quickly bonded with Ru-Andria, and the little girl's face would light up whenever she heard Joy's voice.
After her decision to take them in, Rubin knew he had found a lifelong friend.
In the four days they spent together, Rubin and Joy took care of Ru-Andria and talked endlessly.
During this time, Rubin learned that Joy had four children, seven grandchildren, and three great-grandchildren.
While they were staying together, Joy took Ru-Andria on walks. They even went grocery shopping and visited her late husband's gravesite together.
Rubin could see how big of a blow her husband's death had been to Joy. While at the cemetery, he said, "Hey, Charles, look - it's your new granddaughter."
Charles is Joy's recently deceased husband.
While Joy was with Rubin and his daughter, they had many beautiful moments together. Rubin lost his mother to cancer back in 2007, which means Joy was like his mother.
Eventually, the birth certificate was ready, and Rubin and his daughter could now be on their way. He was already missing his wife and kids.
However, there was no denying that he was going to miss Joy.
They promised that they would stay in touch and see each other regularly through FaceTime as they parted. Joy was overwhelmed with happiness.
Despite starting out as strangers, they turned into great friends within a short time.
Although Rubin was more grateful to Joy given the sacrifices she had made on their account, Joy was just as thankful for the wonderful chance to help out.
Joy could have said no, and possibly doomed his fate. However, she happily welcomed them into her home with both hands, helping save a desperate stranger and his infant daughter from an impossible situation.