Tyler kids’ care, curiosity sparks friendship with older neighbor

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Published: Mar. 8, 2022 at 11:48 PM CST|Updated: Mar. 9, 2022 at 3:45 PM CST
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TYLER, Texas (KLTV) - Every day, just before 3:30 p.m., Peggy Hicks prepares snacks and a cold cup of lemonade for her neighbors who come to visit. On Tuesday she added strawberries to make it extra special.

Noah, 6, and Isabella, 4, get home from school, drop their stuff off, run across their yard, look both ways, and go to visit Hicks everyday after school.

“After the fall, I just saw the concern in them. They kept asking, is she okay? She was still at the hospital,” said the children’s mother, Sasha Rodriquez.

Hicks has a bad fall outside the Rodriquez’s home a few weeks ago.

“I stayed in the hospital for about ten days and things are starting to clear up. This eye was shut for quite awhile,” Hicks said.

But the moment she got better and was able to come home, the kids were there to support and check in on her.

“Here are my darlings,” she greets them.

“How was your day Ms. Peggy?” Noah asked. “Oh, my day was good. I’m so glad to see y’all,” she responded and embraced them in a hug.

“I look forward to 3:30 because that’s when they come back from school. And they want to come over here almost every day, and that’s okay with me. I love them all,” Hicks said.

The trio talks, works on math, the alphabet, and enjoys the world around them. To some they may look like close neighborly friends but to the kids, she’s more.

“She is the best grandma I know,” Noah said.

“Because she likes us and she plays with us so much,” Isabella eagerly added.

Hicks said they bring her so much joy. She’s been widowed for several years and no longer works. She said she had been falling into sadness.

“I’m doing so much better because of the children. I’m proud of them because they don’t look at me as, ‘eww, that’s an old lady, I don’t want to bother her,’” Hick said. “But they’re very loving and they’re very watchful of me to make sure that I’m okay.”

Not only does it bring Ms. Peggy joy, the children’s mother said she’s proud of them.

“It makes me so proud to know that it’s their initiative. I don’t send them here, and I just love to see that in their hearts. That care for their neighbors, for the elders, it’s just such a joy,” she said.

She said they are learning a lot from their friendship.

“They love on her, listen to her stories, and learn from her. They learn so much from her. They love to ask her questions and it’s just a joy to see that friendship, years and years gap in there, so many generations. To see them bond and to see them be friends and hang out, they never want to go back home.”

When asked how it makes Noah feel getting to see Ms. Peggy every day, he said he feels “a little bit special.”

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