Twitter users show “heartwarming side of human nature,” help parents in search of rare VHS for autistic son

November 16, 2017 11:39 am, Last Updated: November 17, 2017 7:35 pm

In this day and age when movies stream on every device we own, DVDs and Blu-ray discs are slowly becoming obsolete. So you can only imagine how difficult it is to find a VHS.

But thanks to the kindness of strangers, one father will be able to give a rare VHS to his son on Christmas.

James and Cindy Dutton’s 19-year-old son, Thomas, recently created a list of all the things he would like for Christmas.

“Thomas is autistic with severe learning disability and finds the written word easier than speaking to express himself,” the couple said in a statement. “It’s only been the third Christmas that he has really been aware of being able to ask for presents.”

Thomas’ Christmas list included many inexpensive items.

The Duttons were able to find everything Thomas wrote on his list except for one item, a Postman Pat VHS.

Although Postman Pat first aired on the BBC before Thomas was born—the first 13 episodes aired in 1981—the teenager enjoys watching them on YouTube.

“However, he also likes having a physical copy to line up with other ones near his bed,” his parents said.

His parents were able to find everything except one Postman Pat VHS.

James and Cindy turned to social media to help them find a copy of the VHS. Cindy posted about it on Facebook and James asked his followers on Twitter. At first neither found much success, then James asked his brother, who has over 10,000 followers to retweet his original tweet.

Many offered to scour their basements or their parents’ attics to look for a copy of the VHS to give to James, but none of the leads panned out. That is until Jill Hulme saw the tweet on her timeline.

Many responded to James’ tweet offering their help.

James’ tweet was also retweeted by Brendan Cole, a star on the British reality show “Strictly Come Dancing,” and it was Cole’s tweet that caught the attention of Jill Hulme.

Hulme immediately contacted James when she realized she had a copy of “Postman Pat’s Prize Postbag,” and she knew exactly where it was.

Hulme discovered she had a copy and was more than happy to give it to James for Thomas.

Hulme wrote that her copy of “Postman Pat’s Prize Postbag” was lying in a box of items to be donated that week.

“It really is a wonderful story which I’m so grateful to be part of,” Hulme said. “I have three boys, who when I told what had happened, were so pleased to hear that Thomas would be getting such a great surprise on Christmas morning.”

James was thrilled to see someone had a copy and was willing to part with it. The Duttons said they were completely overwhelmed by the response from complete strangers, but there was one thing that really touched them—the “heartwarming side of human nature.”

(Facebook/Cindy Dutton)

“I think the biggest thing that we have learned is the power of social media for good things and the kindness of complete strangers,” they said.