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Stranger helps mom soothe baby on a plane after encountering 'rude' passengers

Kesha Bernard's small act of kindness on a flight from Seattle to Denver has traveled all around the world.
/ Source: TODAY

One woman’s small act of kindness on a flight from Seattle to Denver has traveled all around the world.

Kesha Bernard, herself a mother of two, posted a picture of herself calming a flustered fellow mom’s baby during the Alaska Airlines flight on Facebook — a simple act of kindness toward a stranger that has since gone viral.

In the week since her call for more common decency, which she posted the same day as the July 29 flight, interview requests are piling up from across the country and messages of praise have poured in from as far away as Brazil and England.

The 25-year-old photographer from Richmond Hill, Georgia, told TODAY she is “humbled” by the reaction, but she just wished there had been more understanding shown by her fellow passengers.

“People were huffing, puffing and mumbling, ‘Why can't she get her babies to stop crying?’ — that her way of discipline wasn't working,” said Bernard. “That really hit me because as a parent you can't do anything in that situation. The mom was trying to do everything she could. It was just people being rude.”

Woman helps mom with crying kids on plane
Kesha Bernard with her own two kidsKesha Shonet Photography

The drama unfolded while the plane was still at the gate, during which time one of the unidentified mother’s three children, a toddler, had a meltdown. The tantrum caused the woman’s baby to start crying, too. It didn’t take long for Bernard — on her first trip away from her own 3-year-old daughter and 4-year-old son — to empathize with the mother’s attempts to manage three children while traveling.

“I was just about three rows up, so I heard everything that was going on,” recalled Bernard. “I was figuring that someone closer would sit in. I was in the middle seat, so it wasn’t easy to get out, either.

After witnessing that her fellow passengers were getting more hostile and that the flight attendant was only observing the situation, Bernard went over to offer help. Immediately after she brought the baby to her own seat, the infant fell asleep on her lap. She said she returned the sleeping child to her grateful mother about a quarter of the way through the flight. (“When you help people, everything works out better,” said Bernard.)

Her one regret? That she didn’t get the name or number of the other mom to check up with her later.

“I'm surprised that people are surprised by people doing something like that,” Bernard told TODAY. “I didn't do anything extreme or amazing. It's crazy that it's getting this much attention, but I'm happy and humble ... to have something light and good in the news.”