As a kid, tearing open a present to find a smiling fluffy teddy bear just waiting for your embrace as you drift off to sleep brings about a feeling of friendship that’s hard to rival. Yet, as children grow older, the lovable plush pals find themselves collecting dust in the back of a closet!

But some bears are a little bit different. Twitter user Josiah knows this all too well. When his granddad died, Josiah’s mother gave her son a teddy bear in his honor. However, this was no ordinary bear; this was one he’d hold close to his heart for the rest of his life for a very special reason.

Giving a child a teddy bear isn’t just offering them another plaything. Children bond with their bear buddies and develop a sense of friendship and belonging. Josiah, however, had a connection with his bear on a different level.

See, before the bear, he grew up with an amazingly close connection to his grandfather. They did everything together, went everywhere together, and always seemed like they had a bond that ran much deeper than a typical grandfather and grandchild.

@HiyaJosiah / Twitter

On hot summer days when the family would barbecue, Josiah would grill up food with his grandfather while learning valuable cooking lessons from the old man, as well as lessons about life itself.

@HiyaJosiah / Twitter

But, as we all know, grandparents don’t stay around forever, and eventually, Josiah bid a tearful farewell to his grandfather. However, years later during a holiday dinner, something extraordinary happened.

@HiyaJosiah / Twitter

It was Thanksgiving day, and Josiah was 27 years old at the time. His family came over to celebrate and everyone sat down to start the epic feast, but before they did, his mom handed him a wrapped gift.

Slightly confused but appreciative of the gesture, Josiah hesitated as his family eagerly awaited him to open it. Then he tore at the box. At first, he was perplexed. Then, the importance of the gift hit all at once.

It was a teddy bear. But, this was no ordinary teddy. It was actually hand-sewn using swaths from various shirts his grandfather wore. He immediately posted the photo on Twitter, and not long after, he received heartwarming responses.

@HiyaJosiah / Twitter

A girl named Bonnie Buie shared this photo of her and her grandfather. They had a bond similar to Josiah and his grandfather. On Father’s Day one year, she did something extra special for him.

@buie123 / Twitter

Bonnie’s grandfather had a favorite shirt he wore all the time. It was covered in World War II fighter planes, but it was getting worn out. So, she and her family followed in the footsteps of Josiah’s mother.

@buie123 / Twitter

Before he returned home, Bonnie’s family had the old shirt made into a teddy bear as a special keepsake. But, as it turned out, Bonnie was just one of many who had a special story to share.

@bluie123 / twitter

A Twitter user named Torie uploaded this photo of her teddy bear. She sadly lost her father when she was nine, so her mother used her father’s shirt to make a stuffed bear. Now her dad is always with her.

@torri_torrie / Twitter

Meagan Donohue’s mother made this cuddly little buddy for her three-year-old son after her father passed away. Her son might not remember his grandfather, but this will always ensure his spirit is close.

@AuthorDonohue / Twitter

After Sydney Nowak’s father died when she was just 13 years old, her aunt snagged one of his favorite shirts and made this. Sydney admitted she occasionally put his favorite cologne on it, as well.

@juuliusceasars / Twitter

Niki from Canada lost her brother, but this special gift enabled her to keep memories of him alive and well. She passed it along to her daughter — who never met him — but still holds him close.

@Galbrai1Niki / Twitter

Another Twitter user named Kat Mills uploaded a photo of this bear that was made using her dad’s old work shirt. From the looks of it, he appeared to be a mechanic, and now the bear can help mend her sadness.

@katmillsm / Twitter

This cuddly bundle of plush was actually made from a pair of pajamas that belonged to a girl named Caitlin’s grandmother. She was stoked to give the doll to her cousin’s newborn child.

@_Caitlin_B / Twitter

Every grandchild was given one of these bears with a different bow tie their granddad wore according to Twitter user Quinn. Now, all the kids in the family have something to remember him by.

@quinnmarion13 / Twitter

Leanne Fletcher offered her condolences to Josiah and shared this photo of two bears made from her father’s shirts after he passed. She gave one to her son and one to her sister.

@L_Fletcher / Twitter

Even though this particular gift wasn’t a teddy bear like everyone else received, David Storms’ family had this blanket made out of his late-mother’s aprons. It’s meant for the first great-grandchild that arrives in the family.

@David_Storms / Twitter

The outpouring of comments on Josiah’s post was incredible. Even though teddy bears are associated with children, plenty of people around the world have ones that hold a deeper meaning. But, that doesn’t mean children can’t have extra-special connections.

After dropping her kids off at school, Brooke Fadeski, right, and her 12-year-old dog, Olive, were walking in Wisconsin’s Elm Grove Village Park. There, she noticed something odd lying just beneath the water in one of the ponds.

Brooke Dreske Fadeski / Facebook

She recalled it was “in one of the grossest parts of the pond,” so she almost didn’t see what looked like a muzzle and paws sticking out of the water. Worried it was an animal, Brooke couldn’t just keep walking.

Carefully, Brooke inched towards the water for a better look. The figure was just out of reach — and because Brooke wasn’t about to wade into the murky pond to retrieve it — she found a nearby sunflower stalk and used it to drag the figure to safety.

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But it wasn’t an animal she’d just rescued. Not exactly. It was a black teddy bear. “He was covered in all sorts of mess,” she recalled, so she picked it up, squeezed out the water, and put it in a plastic bag to take home, compelled, for some reason, to clean it up.

This was one lucky bear. He had the good fortune of getting a thorough “bath” in Brooke’s washing machine. Brooke was charmed by the “good as new” bear. “I stared at Mr. Bear and just smiled,” she said. “Somehow [he] just made my day.” But now she had a mystery on her hands.

Brooke Fadeski

As much as she loved him, Brooke knew the bear must belong to someone in the area. She posted in a buy, sell, and trade Facebook group, “Found this precious teddy bear in EG Park pond looking pretty rough. He’s getting some spa treatments and hoping to find his owner.”

One Facebook user saw the post later that day and couldn’t believe her eyes. She knew the bear well — she could’ve picked him out of a teddy bear line up! But even more importantly, she knew its story…

See, Catherine Antczak and her two-year-old son, Henry, loved to frequent the Elm Grove Village Park in Wisconsin during the day. On their walks, Henry always brought along a special friend…

Catherine Antczak / Facebook

Who was this lucky buddy? A stuffed black bear named Blueberry! As Catherine later explained, “He does everything with him,” so it was understandable that the bear would be in Henry’s arms while they were at the park.

Catherine Antczak

One fall day, Catherine and Henry took their usual route and ended up spending some time by the pond. It was proving to be a lovely day until suddenly, Henry was frantic.

“Blueberry, where are you?” Henry cried over and over again. That’s when Catherine realized that Henry wasn’t holding the bear anymore. She looked on the ground around them, but Blueberry wasn’t anywhere to be seen.

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They retraced their steps and looked all over the park. Catherine hoped they would find him, but the black bear was just…gone. They later left empty-handed.

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Catherine said, “I pretty much gave up hope after that.” Three weeks passed and there was still no sign or word regarding the missing bear — until Brooke went for a walk.

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Catherine’s sister was the one who spotted that aforementioned Facebook post. “I was like, ‘Oh my gosh, it’s Blueberry,'” she recalled. “I think my heart skipped a beat.” She reached out to set up Blueberry and Henry’s reunion.

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Being a mother, Brooke knew what stuffed animals meant to kids. She wanted to make a journal to give to Henry, along with Blueberry, so he knew where Blueberry was all this time. She didn’t want him to think his bear abandoned him!

Brooke Dreske Fadeski / Facebook

So she made a book called The Adventures of Blueberry and Henry, which she hoped would chronicle Blueberry’s time away from Henry — you know, so he didn’t feel abandoned!

Brooke Fadeski

“After I got lost in the park a while ago,” the book began, “I made some friends with a duck family. They were nice but I was still hoping I’d get back to you.” That must’ve been comforting for Henry to hear!

Details, anecdotes, and photographs filled the book, shedding light on Blueberry’s journey home. Apparently, without his best bud around, Blueberry turned briefly to piracy! Yarr!

CBS 58 via Brooke Fadeski

Luckily, Blueberry left behind his swashbuckling ways and returned to his loving roots, a moment captured in this photo. He looked right at home cozying up to Olive. Indeed, Blueberry had a wild three weeks!

CBS 58 via Brooke Fadeski

Eventually, it was time for Blueberry to go home — both he and Henry were surely relieved! The moment the two friends reunited was as heartwarming as you’d imagine.

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Catherine recalled that Brooke’s kind gesture was above and beyond what the average person would do. “It will be something that we always remember,” she said. “It just really restores your faith in humanity.”

Brooke was thrilled by the reunion and hopes to transform The Adventures of Blueberry and Henry into a real children’s book. For now, the original story is safe with Henry’s baby book and will be read to him when he is a little older!