November 10, 2014

Sometimes we just forget how kind and thoughtful people can be. A reminder:

A heartwarming video message recorded for a child with autism by Doctor Who star Peter Capaldi gave the nine-year-old the courage to go to his grandmother’s funeral, his father has said.

In the video, Capaldi told Thomas Goodall, whose grandmother had recently died, that “sometimes sad things happen to us” and that he was on his side.

“When he said ‘sometimes sad things happen’, it was as though he was mentioning it (the bereavement) without mentioning it,” said his father Ross Goodall.

“Thomas only sees black and white – there is no grey area – and he has taken it to mean that you can be happy, even though sad things happen.

“That was when he decided that he wanted to go to the funeral. Up until then, he didn’t want anything to do with it but he was even comforting his sister. He was a different child. Normally, anything out of his comfort zone comes with consequences,” he told the Guardian.

Thomas, who is an avid Doctor Who fan and particularly liked the 11th Doctor, played by Matt Smith, wrote to Capaldi in early October wishing him luck in his new role.

Capaldi responded by letter soon after, thanking him and wrote a separate note to his father with advice on how to arrange a tour of the set and promising to send a video message to Thomas.

That message arrived by email three weeks after the family’s subsequent bereavement. “I am assuming Peter Capaldi knew Thomas had lost his nan but the timing was just pot-luck,” Ross Goodall said.

“It was the first time he had smiled since his nan passed away. The only communication we had got until then was when he got upset and got angry.”

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