100-Year-Old Woman Who Misses Her Late Son Gives His Old Toys To 2-Year-Old Neighbor

Oct 07, 2022 by apost team

While some say that the grass is greener on the other side, two friends discovered that it’s at its greenest when you are on the same side together. The years 2020 and 2021 were filled with many challenges, but they have also presented several opportunities for people to rediscover themselves, their passions and even reconnect with old friends. What’s even more amazing is that many people were able to forge new friendships after having some downtime to finally connect with those they may not have been able to before.

For then-2-year-old Benjamin Olson and then-99-year-old Mary O’Neill, they discovered just how easy it was to form a sweet bond over a chain-linked fence. O’Neill currently lives by herself, as she lost her husband several years ago, and her grandchildren and great-grandchildren do not live in the same state as she does. She had been isolated for a good portion of the coronavirus pandemic, but she was lucky enough to find some company when she forged an unlikely yet utterly adorable friendship with her next-door neighbor.

Despite their 97-year age gap, Benjamin and O’Neill have gone on to become the best of friends as they have enjoyed spending time together outside at a safe distance during the pandemic. From their own backyards in their neighborhood in Minneapolis, Minnesota, the pair has found a way to maintain an adorable friendship that has since captured the hearts of many people all around the world. As time has progressed and restrictions have eased up, the two have been able to spend even more time together and have continued to enjoy each other’s company.

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According to CBS News, Benjamin’s family had been neighbors with O’Neill long before he was even born, but they didn’t see her much. After being forced to stay home during most of 2020 after the pandemic hit, the Olson family began spending more time in their yard while O’Neill would be in hers, resulting in the neighbors spending more time together. As time went on, Benjamin and O’Neill developed a sweet friendship with one another.

“He would run over to Mary when he would see her in the yard and he would bring her a ball,” Benjamin’s mother Sarah Olson said. In turn, O’Neill would hit the ball back to him with her cane, thus creating their own game called “cane ball,” as O’Neill described it. O'Neill also gave Benjamin a box of toy trucks that once belonged to her late son.  Together, the two play with bubbles and water guns. She has rediscovered what it means to be a kid again, as her childlike spirit was awakened when her friendship with Benjamin began.

Olson told KARE 11 that O’Neill became her son’s “first best friend,” and the new companionship came pretty easily. “We didn’t have to work on it at all, it just happened really naturally,” Olson said, as per CBS News. She continued, “Friendship can just happen so many different ways, I’m just really happy they were able to form this friendship — quarantine or not. I’m happy they formed this friendship because it means a lot to her and it means a lot to him, too.” 

The friends even celebrated O’Neill’s milestone birthday together in August 2021 when the woman turned 100 years old! According to KARE 11, the pair still play together almost every day.


What do you think about this new friendship between two neighbors? Did you connect with anyone new in the past year or so? Let us know, and be sure to pass this along to your loved ones, too!

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