This is the story of a little girl who had a sad loss and of the hotel staff who showed great care in making her happy again.
This story was told recently on a TV news show and it has made the rounds of social media. But this is a story worth repeating because it will warm your heart and it reminds us all that kindness and professionalism can make the world a better place.
In late January, the Stang family of Lloydminster were coming home from a wonderful holiday in California. Little Ava, a cherubic 2 year old, was sick during the holiday. To cheer her up, her mom and dad bought her a white plush unicorn that had a golden horn and a sweet look, a toy almost as big as their little blond daughter. Little Ava hugged her furry unicorn friend on the flight home.
Anticipating a late flight back to Alberta and the next day’s long drive to their home in Lloydminster, the Stangs chose to stay the night at the Days Inn Edmonton Airport on Leduc’s 50th street. After a restful and pleasant stay, the family headed home. Later on, they were sad to discover that one very special friend had been left behind in Leduc, Ava’s pretty unicorn!
Courtney Stang, Ava’s mom, called the hotel and was informed that yes, her daughter’s new friend was found and well cared for by the front desk staff and had, in fact, made many friends at the hotel and was patiently waiting to be picked up and returned to Little Ava, who was missing him so.
On Valentine’s Day, the Days Inn Operations Manager Gail Stang got the anticipated call that a family friend was coming over to pick up Ava’s unicorn. Ms. Stang and a front desk team member Mayette Mabasa went into action. They took the Unicorn on a tour of the hotel, taking photos of it in special places that a hotel guest would enjoy; checking in, sitting on a luggage cart, in the tub, on the front desk phone, eating a bowl of red jello in the Breakfast Lounge and hugging a new friend, Valentine Teddy.
Gail and Mayette quickly created a cute photo album of the Unicorn’s Great Adventure. When the Stangs friend came to pick up the Unicorn, she was also presented with that photo Album for little Ava.
Having reached its forever home, the Unicorn was the cause of great joy and excitement. Ava and her big brother enjoyed the photo album of her unicorn’s adventure, as he read to her all the fun captions the Days Inn ladies had included.
This could be the happy ending to this little story but… there is more. Recently, a surprised Gail Johnson received in the mail a small package stamped in Lloydminster AB. It was from the Stangs. It was a small photo album with beautiful photos and funny captions depicting the happy reunion of Ava and her unicorn. The hotel staff enjoyed all the photos of little Ava, so pretty and healthy, spending time with her new friend, having a snack with him next to her and holding a sign that read, “Thank you!”
The Stangs gratefully contacted the media. A reporter came to interview Gail Johnson in Leduc and another recorded the Stangs story in their home city. Ms. Johnson was surprised and pleased to see this story broadcast and she was willing to share, “This is our culture, to go beyond expectations to ensure our guests have a wonderful experience at the Days Inn Edmonton Airport. We’re so glad Ava got her friend back. It was a pleasure to look after him!”
Kind hearts and an extra touch of customer service excellence went a long way to make a little girl happier.