+
Quick thinking waitress had a gut feeling a boy was being abused. So she gave him a sign.
via WFTV

This article originally appeared on 01.15.21


Server Flavaine Carvalho was waiting on her last table of the night at Mrs. Potatohead's, a family restaurant in Orlando, Florida when she noticed something peculiar.

The parents of an 11-year-old boy were ordering food but told her that the child would be having his dinner later that night at home. She glanced at the boy who was wearing a hoodie, glasses, and a face mask and noticed a scratch between his eyes.


A closer look revealed a bruise on his temple.

So Carvalho walked away from the table and wrote a note that said, "Do you need help?" and showed it to the boy from an angle where his parents couldn't see.

Mr.s Potatohead's in Orlando, Florida

The boy shook his head, no. "I knew it that he was afraid," she said.

Carvalho made two more attempts until the boy nodded yes.

The server then called the owner of the restaurant to let her know that she was going to call the police on the boy's parents.

“SEE SOMETHING SAY SOMETHING: An Orlando waitress saw a family withholding food from a boy at a table. She noticed bruises on his body and created this sign to secretly ask the child if he needed help. When he signaled "Yes" she called us. The stepfather & mother were arrested.”

The police arrived and arrested the boy's father

on one count of third-degree child abuse. His mother Kristen Swann was arrested with two counts of child neglect. A four-year-old girl was taken from the family by authorities. They say she showed no signs of abuse.

Detectives spoke with the boy and learned his parents frequently withheld food from him as a form of punishment. He was 20 pounds underweight. After searching his body, they discovered that he was nearly covered in bruises.

His father had recently beat him with a broomstick and back scratcher.

via Orlando PD

The boy told detectives that he was once hung upside down from his ankles in a door frame by his father and had been restrained by being strapped to a furniture dolly.

"To be honest what this child had gone through was torture," Detective Erin Lawler said. "There was no justification for it in any realm of the world. I'm a mother and seeing what that 11-year-old had to go through, it shocks your soul."

“Chief Orlando Rolon, @OrlandoPolice, with waitress Flavaine Carvalho (middle) who saved an abused 11yo when he was dining with his family. They say the boy was “tortured.” The full details of his salvation on @fox35orlando at 5/6pm. #FOX35 #news #crime #update”

Carvalho's quick thinking and bravery may have saved the lives of two children.

"This could have been a homicide situation if she had not have intervened," Orlando Police Chief Orlando Rolon said.

"The lesson here for all of us is to recognize when we see something that isn't right to act on it… This saved the life of a child," he added.

The restaurant's owner, Rafaela Cabede, hopes that Carvalho's bravery inspires others to look out for signs of abuse as well.

"We understand that this has to encourage other people that when you see something, say something," Cabede said. "We know when we see a situation that is wrong, we know what's the right thing to do. We know that speaking up is the right thing to do. But it takes more than acknowledging it. It takes courage.


A breastfeeding mother's experience at Vienna's Schoenbrunn Zoo is touching people's hearts—but not without a fair amount of controversy.

Gemma Copeland shared her story on Facebook, which was then picked up by the Facebook page Boobie Babies. Photos show the mom breastfeeding her baby next to the window of the zoo's orangutan habitat, with a female orangutan sitting close to the glass, gazing at them.

"Today I got feeding support from the most unlikely of places, the most surreal moment of my life that had me in tears," Copeland wrote.

Keep ReadingShow less

It's a cat toy, people. Deal with it.

Kids have relentless curiosity and imagination galore. That magical quality often catches adults off guard in the most hilarious of ways.

Tennis pro Serena Williams recently posted a video to her TikTok showing her 5-year-old daughter Olympia (who is the spitting image of her mother, by the way) playing with a “toy” for their cat Karma.

By “toy,” I mean a tampon.


Keep ReadingShow less

She's enjoying the big benefits of some simple life hacks.

James Clear’s landmark book “Atomic Habits: An Easy & Proven Way to Build Good Habits & Break Bad Ones” has sold more than 9 million copies worldwide. The book is incredibly popular because it has a simple message that can help everyone. We can develop habits that increase our productivity and success by making small changes to our daily routines.

"It is so easy to overestimate the importance of one defining moment and underestimate the value of making small improvements on a daily basis,” James Clear writes. “It is only when looking back 2 or 5 or 10 years later that the value of good habits and the cost of bad ones becomes strikingly apparent.”

His work proves that we don’t need to move mountains to improve ourselves, just get 1% better every day.

Most of us are reluctant to change because breaking old habits and starting new ones can be hard. However, there are a lot of incredibly easy habits we can develop that can add up to monumental changes.

Keep ReadingShow less