Someone at NASA deserves a big bonus, or at least a pat on the back, for this sweet and inspirational story that's been making its way around the Web. It all started with a letter 7-year-old Dexter Walters wrote to the space agency stating his future dreams.
He wrote, "I heard that you are sending two people to Mars and I would like to come, but I'm 7 so I can't. I would like to come in the future. What do I need to do to become an astronaut?"
Adorable, but these are busy astronauts and scientists. The most his mother probably ever expected that he would get back was some dashed-off form letter. What he got, however, was so much more.
In the personal letter to Dexter, which his mother posted on Reddit, NASA wrote:
NASA wants you to know that your thoughts and ideas to further space exploration are important, and we hope that you will continue to learn all you can about NASA's space programs, missions, and accomplishments. Just think – in a few years, you could be one of the pioneers that may help lead the world's activities for better understanding of our earth and for exploring space.
Not only that, they sent pictures of Mars, of the Mars Curiosity rover, a sticker, and a bookmark too. Dexter, of course, was over the moon. Don't you just want to hug whoever took the time to do this?
While we haven't gotten anything quite as significant, my son, now 9, has a penchant for writing letters to companies with his ideas (he wants to be an inventor). I always worry that he's going to be disappointed when he doesn't get a response, but he actually has gotten some pretty great personal ones from both Lego and Nintendo. Each time I've been so appreciative of them taking the time to actually respond and interact with him. Those little efforts go a long way to win favor with adults, but more importantly go a long way to inspire children's dreams and faith that they can do anything in this world.
Good luck, Dexter.
Do you encourage your kids to write letters to companies and organizations?
Image via Reddit