YUCCA VALLEY — “Pay it Forward” was a movie from 2001 about people performing an act of kindness for someone else then requiring that person do something nice for another person. Yucca Valley resident Mary Morphet received her act of kindness from Mike the Plumber recently.
Morphet’s husband, who died in March, served in the submarine service and went into Japanese waters during World War II.
After his death, Morphet left the master bedroom, where her husband slept, alone. Recently, she decided to sleep in the room again and called a plumber to fix the sink in the master bathroom. She called one plumber, but wasn’t happy with what they told her.
“What drew me back was when they said, ‘We can’t guarantee you it won’t be more because there might be some problems that we would uncover,’ and they were really building it up to charge me a horrible amount,” Morphet said.
Finally, she decided to call Mike Reynolds, who set a date with her to go and check out the problem. When he arrived at her house, Morphet said she began to make her case, mentioning her World War II veteran husband’s recent death and her current financial situation.
Because of his past experiences, Reynolds sympathized with Morphet’s late husband’s journey.
“I know of another World War II veteran in a submarine and he told me some amazing stories, so there’s a special place in my heart for submarine and Navy men,” he said.
That’s when Reynolds did something Morphet wasn’t expecting.
“He said, ‘How about $20?’” she recalled. “I said, ‘Oh my gosh. Thank you.’ He only charged me $20 and the minimum they charge is $80 to do anything. I was just so flabbergasted at this wonderful, gorgeous man’s generosity.”
In addition to fixing her sink for a low price, Reynolds’ partner fixed Morphet’s plant.
“It’s on a rod-iron stand and it was top-heavy; I never could get it straight,” she said. “It was an orchid of my husband’s. So his buddy took it and he took the stand and he shoved it into the ground so that it would be firm and put the pot back on it. I thought, that’s not even plumbing. How nice. These guys were wonderful to me.”
Morphet said the act of kindness made her feel loved at a time when she needed it the most.
“I have been feeling very empty since I lost my husband,” she admitted. “It was just so wonderful to find somebody this lovely, this generous, so sweet. He could’ve socked it to me. He saw the house. I really felt love for this person because that’s the kind of person that you do love: a generous, nice guy.”
Although it meant a lot to Morphet, Reynolds insists he was just doing what he was supposed to do.
“It’s not about me, it’s really not,” he said. “I’m just out doing my duty. When I die and the big guy upstairs opens that book, that’s when I want to see the extra credit points, on that day. When he says, ‘Mike, you get to stay up here with me.’”