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People Share The Moment That Instantly Changed Their Opinion Of Someone

Steven Y

Life is hard, but people don’t have to be. As these people will testify, society only works because we help each other in the toughest of times. From the neighbors who dug deep in their hearts (and pockets) to those silent protectors who asking for nothing in return, there’s nothing like a random encounter with kindness in a harsh world. Cheer up to these sweet stories about random acts of kindness and generosity.


1. Love Drug

My dad recently lost his job, and with it his health insurance. He had a heart attack last year and has to take an expensive medication as a result. A one-month supply is around $250 without the insurance to help. He went to his doctor’s office yesterday to find a coupon to at least shave off some of the cost. A nurse went in the back and ended up coming back with a two-month supply of free samples for him.

Saved my parents from paying $500 out of pocket for a drug he absolutely needed.

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2. First-Class Trip to Awww-ville

My mom was dying, she lived in Australia and I live in Georgia. My husband had been laid off from work and I couldn’t afford to fly to Australia on a last-minute basis. A person that I only know from a message board used her frequent flyer miles and paid for my trip to Australia…not only that but she booked me first class both ways.

Velvetrose

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3. Three Times the Generosity

I had triplets last year and someone I work with has brought me a hot meal once a week or so for the entire first year of their lives, so I wouldn’t have to worry about cooking. The thing is, she drops them off ninja-style, not wanting to impose. She’ll text me that she left something on the porch. It has been one of the nicest things anyone has ever done for me.

Jaberkaty

4. Something to Be Thankful About

When I was in first grade, my mom was really struggling financially. She mentioned something about how hard Thanksgiving was going to be to another mom. Well, the week before Thanksgiving, there was a raffle where we could win an entire Thanksgiving dinner. My teacher gave every student two cards from a deck. When she gave me mine, she kind of said “wait” and checked them before she gave them back to me. I won the raffle.

Even if she hadn’t checked the cards, I’d have suspected something. I never win anything.

teddyclopse

5. Deductible From a Benevolent Source

When my husband was diagnosed with lung cancer in August of 1999, he was working for a small family-owned trucking company. Once they were forced to take him off their insurance, they contacted me about paying for Cobra insurance. I was a stay-at-home mom and had no money to pay for that, so I thanked them for the information and hung up.

Two days later, I got a call from the daughter-in-law of the owner. She said that I would be getting a paper in the mail that I was to sign. Paper said that I agreed to pay for our part of the Cobra and that the policy would be instated on such & such a date. I said…but I told you…I can’t pay for that. She said I was not to worry about it, just do it. I did.

Someone in the family called me once a week to keep tabs on how he was doing, up until his death in January of 2000. They, obviously, thought a great deal of him. Forever grateful.

snakehag

6. No Highway to Heaven for You Today

Last month, I dropped my car off to this mechanic that apparently is good with Volkswagens. I explained to him that I have NO idea what’s wrong with my car and a handful of other mechanics have already looked at it and they never seem to fix it (and I always get billed). So, a month goes by, he calls me and tells me he’s been doing what he can to the car, but nothing seems to work.

Therefore, it cannot pass inspection. Sigh. I go to his garage today, meet with him and talk a bit about what I can do if I want to sell the car. Finally, I ask, “What do I owe you?” He says, “Nothing, don’t worry about it” I told him I can afford what he would charge for an inspection, at least let me pay that. He refused any money from me and offered to tow my car back to my place, since I cannot drive a car that is not inspected.

Nice guy.

PackinSteel

7. Bookworms

I was working the cash register at Chick-fil-A and one of the customers had a book that I had been wanting to read. I mentioned to him that I was planning on getting it when I got my paycheck in a few days. The next morning, I go into work and my manager hands me a copy of that very book, saying that some guy had come in and dropped it off for me. The dude went out and bought me the book! It was honestly the nicest thing I ever experienced—and I never even saw him again to say thank you.

thebrobear2

8. Stormy Weather

Here in upstate New York, we just got a foot of snow. I came out to snowblow my driveway—only to discover that my driveway had already been plowed. It’s a very long driveway. Whoever it was didn’t even leave a note or anything. I have no idea who did it or why. Thanks, stranger!

cactusbanger

9. Hit and Stay

When I was 11, I was stupid enough to cross in front of a bus with only a cursory glance backward, and I missed the minivan that had just started to overtake the bus. I got hit by the left-hand corner and flung across the road, injuring my legs and splitting my lower lip. It was a bad accident and my knee still hurts me sometimes even all this time later.

As I lay there on the ground, a lady who I didn’t know but had seen on the bus a few times came over and helped me over to the curb, checked me over, made sure my parents were called, made sure an ambulance was called, and generally looked after a scared tearful hurt little boy until help arrived. She was a wonderful person and helped me hugely to get through that situation in the panic of the moment. I still see her around the neighborhood to this day, and she always gives me a big smile when I wave hello.

DigitalRoman486

10. Little League, Big Heart

When I was little, I did an indoor rec league of soccer with this other little girl, who was very small for her age and incredibly rich. We got along really well and had a lot of fun, but apparently, kids at her private school picked on her a lot. She had so much fun with the “fun only” rec league she wanted to go out for the competitive traveling team, but they told her she wasn’t good enough.

So, her incredibly awesome mom decided to start a “B” team that was a little less competitive for others who wanted to play. She called my mom up and asked if I would try out. I did and I made the team, but the traveling league was waaaaaay more expensive. We just couldn’t afford it, and it was too late to apply for a grant, so my mom told her, unfortunately, I wouldn’t be able to play.

Later that day, she called my mom back and told her she had been able to secure me a late scholarship from the league, and I would be 100% covered. When I was a little older and her daughter no longer played for us (they moved), my soccer coach admitted to my mom that this woman paid for my year of soccer herself and bought my jacket.

Their entire family were the sweetest people you ever met, and it made me feel incredible (albeit a little guilty) that she cared enough about us getting to play together that she would do that for me especially despite the fact they barely knew us.

corcar86

11. Putting the “Care” in Childcare

As a struggling single mom, I had trouble paying the daycare bills. This was especially hard if child support didn’t come, which was often. The daycare director allowed my child to attend without me paying on time. She would delete all late fees and allow me to slowly catch up. They would stay after hours if my job ran late and meet me. They became a kind of family for my son and I.

I tried to give back when I was an elementary education student by volunteering and helping out. I ended up going to school with some of the girls working there. We are all teachers now and trade lesson ideas and job opportunities.

Arthropody

12. Picture Perfect

My family and I spent Christmas in Hawaii and on our trip back (we had about a 5-hour drive to get back home from the airport), we stopped at a rest area. I had been looking at photos from our trip on our digital camera, and it must have been in my lap when I got out of the car and dropped into the parking lot. When we got home, I looked high and low for the camera and couldn’t find it anywhere.

A few weeks later, we got a call from a police officer who lived in our state’s capital (not where we lived) saying someone had found the camera. On it was a picture of my folks’ motorhome (from a previous trip), and you could make out the license plate number. This guy was from another state, just passing through, found our camera at the rest area and contacted the police with the plate number.

The police looked up the plate and contacted us! The guy then mailed us back our camera. It was the nicest thing a stranger had ever done for us. We mailed him back a thank you card and a gift certificate to a restaurant in their area. “Today you, tomorrow me.”

jbev25

13. One Stich at a Time

This is a tiny, tiny thing, but it really made me feel happy. I’m in Amsterdam right now, and on my second day of being here I ripped my Converse apart. Great. They’re my only sneakers and a pair here would cost a lot more than at home. Eventually, I go to a tailor and I feel bad about handing this pair of ratty kind of smelly shoes to him.

I also came in about half an hour before he closed, but it was the only time I could. I don’t know Dutch, and it seems he speaks mostly Dutch/Italian but a little English. He takes my shoes and seems to stop listening to me. Sews them up right there, comes out and gives it to me. I take out my wallet but by the time I saw how much?

He waves me off and goes back to the office in the back. From my experience, people have been so kind, friendly and helpful here.

dreamqueen9103

14. Ringing up Karma

I was in college, living in an apartment, and broke. I had a bag with me containing four loaves of bread that I’d bought for about $1.10, and I didn’t have any idea what I would eat after those were gone. I was at a pay phone in a classroom building, calling my mom collect because I also didn’t have a phone. I knew my mom had already told me she wasn’t going to give me any money anymore, but I hoped she could ask my grandmother for $20.

Before I could get that out, she yelled at me and hung up. As I was dialing my dad at work, someone came up and was waiting for the phone. I explained the situation to my dad, he needed me to call him back in a few minutes (he had a customer in his shop or something). Before I hung up, the person waiting, who’d seen me make two calls now, says, “Other people have to use the phone, too, you know.”

After I hung up, I unloaded on this guy, both barrels. Screaming at him about how I was out of money and out of food, and how he’s probably forced to use a pay phone because his cell phone was broken (this was when cell phones were expensive, so it was a total jab). I stepped away from the phone and wept in a corner while he made his call. After he was done, I sucked it up and apologized.

I was under a lot of stress, and I shouldn’t have taken it out on him, I said, looking at my shoes. Guy puts a $5 bill in my hand, and says, “Give this to someone when they need it.” I have paid that forward manifold.

Nougat

15. Driven to Give

You have heard this from many people over these last few years with the economy, but I lost my job, then lost my house, then lost my car. Pretty bad situation for anyone that has had this happen. My friend was moving from MI to SC and she asked me to help her move into her apt. My other friend drove me to SC so we could both help out. I am in GA, so not too far away.

When I left from that weekend, she handed me a set of keys and said that she realized that since her and her husband work for the same company, they do not need a car. The car was paid off and they gave me their other car!!!! OMG! Who does that? Gives someone a car?

PuffBear

16. Home Away From Home

At one point I lost my job and my girlfriend of two years left me so I couldn’t pay for my apartment anymore. Since my name was on the lease, I was forced to figure something out. I had a chat with my landlord and told him the truth. His response? “Don’t worry about it, stay until you can figure something out.” I looked for a job for 2 1/2 months until I felt so bad about staying there rent free, so I packed all of my stuff and moved back into my parents’ basement.

He never asked for a dime of back rent. I have since joined the military, got married, and have a house of my own, but I will never forget that man’s act of kindness.

shadowsinseptember

17. Boss Lady

My roommates and I were planning to move into a new apartment in our apartment complex. Literally, a week before our move-in date, the landlord apartment manager approaches me and basically says, “Oops, I signed your lease over to someone else.” My roommates and I had already signed the lease contract to that apartment, but for some reason, the apartment manager said the “current” residents had priority.

I was flustered and just told the manager that I would talk to my roommates. Apparently, the only available rooms left in that complex was in terrible, terrible condition that had maggots and mold growing in it (that the manager said he wouldn’t deal with), and a townhouse (which my roommates and I really did not like). My roommates and I were really distressed, because we only had a couple of days to figure out what we were doing.

I was so distraught with the situation that I wasn’t really thinking clearly. I was complaining to my boss who works in real estate. She was furious and said that what my manager did was illegal, especially since I had already signed the lease contract. So, she called up the appropriate authorities and sorted everything out. Shady landlord apartment manager got fired.

The dirty apartment was completely renovated, and we got a month of free rent. In retrospect, I should’ve been thinking logically and contact the appropriate authorities myself and complained, but I felt immensely grateful when my boss worked with me to help settle things, especially since she didn’t really have to do anything.

oreosprinkles

18. Grass Is Always Shorter on the Other Side

When my wife and I moved into our house we didn’t have a lawnmower. Before that we had lived in apartments or rental properties where a lawnmower was provided to us. We also didn’t have the money to buy one at that point. So, for a month our grass sat and grew until we finally got one. I got it put together and started mowing, but it was getting fairly late in the day at that point.

As I started mowing our across-the-street neighbor was sitting in a lawn chair on his driveway with his dog, as he does every evening. He watched me mow for a while as I pushed the mower across our backyard. Finally, without a word, he put his dog back inside his fence, started up his riding mower, and did the front yard for me. When I went to thank him, he just said, “Well, I wasn’t doing anything, and that’s what neighbors do.”

sumojoe

19. Catch These Leaks

I once failed a test in college and was really upset. As I was taking the bus home, I was trying really hard to hold it together long enough to not cry in public, by trying to hide my tears with my sleeve. A girl walked over, handed me a tissue without saying a word, and went back to her seat. It was so nice to have a stranger help me keep it together without trying to pry into my business.

Jellylamp

20. My Heroine

I dated a jerk in high school and into my first two years of university. He didn’t start the physical and mental abuse until three years into the relationship. He was once screaming at me in the university’s common area (where all the cafeterias are, etc.) and basically spat on me. I was such a complete shell of a person at that time, all I could do was cry, because resistance would mean more of the same.

I was 21 at the time. Some girl came storming up to him, got in between us, and started freaking out on him. She took me by the hand into the girls’ washroom and waited with me until I calmed down and walked me out (he scuttled off once we came out and saw she wasn’t going away). She helped me regain an ounce of strength—made me see how darn weak he really was, and it snowballed.

I got my master’s degree in social work and spent the next chunk of time helping abused women and kids. Now I’m a therapist. She really rocked my world, and she didn’t have to!

throwitallaway2020

21. Need a Lift?

Someone gave me a car once after my dad died. I lived across the country from my mum and was really struggling to get to and from her. So, when they were done with their car, they just rang me up and gave it to me. No relation, not even close friends. No words spoken for about seven years prior to this, they didn’t bother much afterwards either. Far and away the nicest thing that’s ever happened to me.

FranticSausage

22. Everybody Loves a Tourist

I was a tourist in Ireland (Galway, specifically). My friend and I had just done a bit of shopping and were strolling about looking for a pub with some live music. Lo and behold two gents came up and said we appeared lost. We told them what we were looking for and they insisted they knew just the place and would be happy to show us the way.

We were initially a bit nervous, but it was a very public street with people about, so we agreed. They then offered to carry our bags, even! I ignored my instinct which was “Oh no. they want to steal your bag!” and instead thought—even if they do it’s all about the experience of traveling right? so I went with it. WELL! These two were just the NICEST guys ever.

They delivered us to the pub, put our things on the hooks near our spot, introduced us to both the bartender and the fiddler that was playing, told them to take good care of us, bought us our first drink, then said “Welcome to Galway, hope you have a great evening!” Didn’t even let us buy them a pint to thank them—they declined politely, saying they had somewhere else to be. Didn’t even ask for a number or anything. It was a really cool human experience.

RachelSid

23. That’s What I Call Baggage Service

I was driving home from college (12-hr drive) and I was almost home, I had a few duffel bags on my roof and at a stop sign one of them slide of the top of my car and got caught underneath the car behind me. It was at a busy intersection with tons of different roads and I couldn’t pull over. I lost where the car went; I had given up and accepted the loss.

10 miles later, I saw my bag in the middle of the busy and large three-lane highway as cars were avoiding it. I pulled over quickly and was trying to devise a plan for how I was going to run in the middle of the highway and retrieve it. Just as I am about to go a big black truck comes to an abrupt halt off to the side, a man gets out and sprints, and I mean SPRINTS to this bag and grabs it. He wasn’t in close danger, but cars were definitely closing in quick, he ran back to me and said “Here ya go, my man” and then peaced out.

OJCheezit

24. Early Delivery

When my son was in the hospital after being born six weeks early, someone left a gift basket with some snacks and a few gift cards for gas and baby clothes. It just showed up in his room one day. It just said “In your time of need” on it. My wife and I was pretty much living at the hospital at the time he was in the NICU. After being scared and tired for a few days It just made a huge difference for some reason.

devildunkard

25. When a Cut and Run Is An Act of Kindness

This probably isn’t the nicest, but it still sticks with me. Someone gave me their number at the DMV because they had to go. Cut my wait time down from three hours to only 45 minutes.

POTUSKNOPE

36. I Pays to Nap

I fell asleep reading in a local park, woke up, and someone had left a 5-dollar bill on my chest.

Mordredbas

27. No One Does It Alone

I went to work really sick and my coworker called off, so I was alone at the registers and trying not to die. This one customer saw me by myself with a long line sick as a dog with no backup, while waiting in line she made tons of loud praises about me being up there all by myself and still being really fast. Then she bought me a cup of coffee with a medicine shot so I could feel better.

The cherry on top was she also bought me a book I mentioned that I was planning to buy in a week or so. This was about a year ago. She comes in at least once a week and we know each other on a first name basis.

As_A_Californian

28. Pick On Someone Your Own Size

I was getting bullied in the locker room years ago. Middle school I believe. I was smaller, had a speech impediment and a birthmark on my face. Out of nowhere, this abnormally taller kid comes over and kicked the kid (bully) in the chest so hard he flew back in the locker. Didn’t know him, he was just a good person. Still talk to him now more than a decade later. Awesome guy.

Privacy_Advocate_

29. You’re as Cool as Ice, Dude

I was walking to the bus stop when it was really icy, and I fell on my back. A guy got out of his car at the red light, ran across the street, helped me up, and helped pick up my papers. He then ran back to his car while flipping off the people honking at him. Awesome dude.

spacialHistorian

30. Secret Samaritan

This is an on-going scenario: My mom is going through treatment for breast cancer, and I have siblings much younger than me still at home (I’m 25, brother is 13, sister is 8). Every 3 or 4 days, something shows up on their porch: bags of clothes for my sister, book series for my brother, gift cards so my parents don’t have to cook, and supplies for my dad’s hobby.

We don’t know who is coordinating this or where anything comes from. On top of the wonderful people who bring meals, we get these deliveries out of nowhere. It’s awesome watching a community really take care of my family, and one day I’d love to learn who has been helping us.

RaeKay14

31. Sleep-O-Gram

I was taking a nap in the library at my school, and, when I woke up, I found that someone had left in my backpack a king-sized 3 Musketeers chocolate bar and a note saying something along the lines of “You’ve been reverse pickpocketed and hope it makes your day better.” College can obviously get very stressful, so it was just a small gesture to really appreciate. Definitely made my day.

chicknburrito

32. The Bank of Good Intention

Through no fault of our own, several years ago my husband and I found ourselves in dire financial straits. We ended up stranded in a place we didn’t really know anybody, and we couldn’t afford our rent that was due in a week. There was no help forthcoming from either of our families. That Sunday, I was downstairs in the church hall having coffee after the service, and someone I barely knew asked me how my summer was going.

I burst into tears. She took me aside and asked for my story, and I told her everything. She prayed for me…and then asked me how much my rent was. I told her. Then she said, “You’ll need groceries too.” When I looked up, she had her cheque book out and was writing a cheque for $1,500. Because of what she did, we had the safety net we needed to find gainful employment in time to make next month’s rent, and slowly get back on our feet.

TheLostSkellyton

33. No Stranger in a Foreign Land

I was in a new city and was trying to get home from my cousin’s place. It was pretty late, and I got a bit lost on my way to the bus stop. A family was standing near me waiting for their ride. They saw me looking confused (and a bit scared too, I think) and the dad got the daughter to ask me if I was okay. They waited with me and when they saw that there were no buses going my way were coming. The dad hailed a taxi for me and told the cabbie to be sure to drop me at my doorstep.

It was so heartwarming, especially as I was in a foreign country, and they were so concerned about me

pixierambling

34. Keep Calm and Don’t Just Carry on

I used to get panic attacks often. When I did, I’d usually try to go find a floor/nice spot of ground to lie down on until the physical symptoms were gone. Having this happen made me realize how nice passing strangers can be. Once when I was lying on the sidewalk in front of a bus stop, a janitor or groundskeeper who saw me gave me a water because he thought I had heatstroke.

Panndademic

35. Totally Floored by the Generosity

Not me, but my parents. They were chumming it up at the bar with some guy on the stool next to them. I wasn’t there, but they somehow got on the subject of them wanting new wood floors in their kitchen. Long story short: one of the guys said I can tell you guys are good people, how much would it be to pay for your new wood floor? They left the bar that night with a $5,000 cheque from a stranger.

Safe to say they were skeptical going into the bank on Monday, but the cheque cleared. They got their new wood floor they were saving up for!

tedirt22

36. Lockers and Lifted Spirts

When I was in high school, I came in one morning to find that someone had left a balloon on my locker with a note telling me to have a great day and that my presence was really appreciated at the school. To this day I have no idea who did it.

Born2dodishes

37. You Can’t Strum If You’re Shivering

When I was in college, I gave guitar lessons for some spending money. Where I went to school, it got very cold in the wintertime. One of my students noticed that I did not have a warm jacket or shoes, so she bought me a coat and a pair of boots at Goodwill. She was a very nice woman.

Ifailedinlife

38. No Fare, Yes Fair!

In the middle of a major snowstorm in Boston I was trying to walk home and had to cross a bridge over the Charles River. The snow plows had pushed snow entirely over the sidewalks, so that it was mounded up to shoulder height. I was trying to walk down the edge of the right-hand lane, hoping I didn’t get hit and trying to get across before a plow came.

A cab slows down and asks out his window if I need a ride. I told him I didn’t have any money on me. He said don’t worry about it, hop in, and gave me a ride home with the meter off. It was more than 10 years ago, and I still think about it whenever it snows.

errydayson

39. Advice From the Stars

When I was in college, I was a physics major aiming to be an astrophysicist, but it was just killing me. I was having a whole identity crisis and feeling worthless and why couldn’t I wrap my head around some of these things? In a move of desperation, I left a message on Neil DeGrasse Tyson’s site asking for advice.

To my GREAT surprise, he actually took time out to CALL ME and give me really honest and understanding advice about what I should do and being realistic about the world of physics. I only graduated with a minor in physics but I felt much better and will have a respect for both him and science forever. May not be a sob story, but at that fragile time in my life it really made a huge difference.

omniumamore

40. Everyone Gets One Oopsie

I was 16, borrowing my mom’s car. Didn’t look at the car in front of me when it stopped for a left turn, and I bumped into it. It was a brand-new car and has clear marks on the bumper from where I hit it. No damage to my mom’s car. Dude clearly sees how distraught I am and says, “Aw, don’t worry about it, that’ll buff out. No harm done.” And drives off.

Thimble

41. Blood Isn’t Everything

My story isn’t that uncommon. I have young parents, they were 18 & 19 when I was born. They got married because they got pregnant and got divorced because they got pregnant and married. They just weren’t ready and way too young. It sucked. Eventually, my dad left the picture altogether, and my mom remarried. She dated this guy since I was 5 or 6, really young.

They got married when I was 9. He raised me. He’s my “true” dad. This seems to be rather common among people my age (23, almost 24). Then my mom and stepdad got divorced when I was 18. It was awful. Much worse on me than my biological parents’ divorce. I was so young when they got divorced (2 years old) and then I gained another “dad” pretty soon afterwards—my stepdad.

When my mom told me that they were getting divorced, I was terrified. I’m an only child, I live in a relatively small town, and this all happened at the beginning of my senior year in high school. I didn’t know who would move out and where I would end up. They would fight all the time. For some reason, they’d wait until I went to bed and then start screaming at each other. I remember one night I heard something like this:

Stepdad: “Get your stuff and leave.”

Mom: “But where am I supposed to go? What about my daughter?”

Stepdad: “I don’t give a DARN where you go, but OUR daughter is staying right here at home. With me.”

At first, I was a little pissed that he thought he could make that decision for me, but after I thought about it for a bit, I realized the gravity of that sentence. It was the first time I had heard him refer to me as his daughter. I still call him by his first name. Old habits die hard, I guess. And really…the main cause of tension between them was money related.

He knew that and knew he’d be able to provide for me better than her. My mom is the most irresponsible person I’ve ever met when it comes to money. She got my first car repossessed (I was “paying” for it. As in, I’d give her the money and assume she was making the payments. Nope. Pocketing that stuff. She also wrote thousands of dollars’ worth of hot checks to my place of employment, using my employee discount and my checks!

I was a minor, so she legally had to be on my bank account. I barely got away with keeping my job. There’s more, but that’s a different story for a different time. Long story short: my mom and I didn’t have the best relationship anyway. Months later, my mom was making plans to move in with my grandma in the neighboring “city” and was going to uproot me and transfer me to a new bigger school.

During Christmas break of my senior year…ugh. I told her that I wanted to stay with my now ex-stepdad. She didn’t know I had heard what he said that one night. She couldn’t believe I was choosing him over her. Also, when I was 19, I still didn’t have a car and my boyfriend at the time was driving me around everywhere…and his grandma had an old 1991 Cadillac DeVille she wanted to sell.

So, my ex-step-dad gave me $2,000 cash and told me to go pick it up. He just gave it to me. No questions asked, no expectation of payback. I still live with him rent-free, as long as I keep a job and stay in school and pay my own bills: new car payment (the Cadillac was awesome but just not cut out for driving all over the place in super-hot summers and a few pretty brutal winters.)

Car insurance, cell phone, etc. I think this has helped me be more responsible with money (definitely something I wouldn’t have learned with my mom) Anything I want I have to pay for myself, but I don’t have to pay for a roof over my head or a bed to sleep in or a shower to use. All because a man who had no legal or genetic responsibility to me took me in anyway, and fought to keep me when my mom left.

I get to experience his generosity every day, and I’m grateful for having him in my life every day. My ex-stepdad is the greatest man alive. Be jealous.

marko23

42. Can’t Put a Price on Education

On September 14th, 1986, my dad dropped me off at boarding school and gave me a five-dollar bill. I never heard from him again. He never paid my tuition bill. So, from the age of 14, I took every job I could get and worked my way through. At $4 an hour, I didn’t even come close to paying off my entire bill, but the school let me stick around because I was a model student in and out of the classroom.

We get to graduation. I opened my little diploma thing expecting to see a bill in five figures. Instead there was a note: “Congratulations on your graduation. A group of us who believe in you and love you have taken care of your bill. We are proud to present you with your diploma.” I later found out that one of my friend’s dad, a fairly well-off dentist, went fundraising among his golf buddies because he didn’t want to see me enter life at 18 under crushing debt.

stupidlyugly

43. There’s a New Sheriff in Town

In 1990, I was 19 years old. I was driving across the country by myself and all I had was $63 and a Texaco card. One night, I notice that my gas tank is close to empty somewhere in the middle of Iowa, so I pull up to a Texaco station—about five minutes after they had closed. I was trying to only use my Texaco card and to conserve what little cash I had.

The person working at the station wouldn’t open to give me gas, so I decide that I’ll just put ALL my clothes on and sleep in my car until they opened again in the AM. It was the middle of December and only about 11 degrees. At about 2 in the morning, I hear a tap on the window and a voice saying “I’m going to have to ask you to step out of the car!”

It was the sheriff. Uh oh! I explained what was going on to him. He ran my ID to make sure I didn’t have warrants or anything and then ominously stated, “That’s not how we do things around here.” Oh no, I was terrified! How do you do things around here? What’s going to happen to me?!? Turns out, he was PISSED that the guy at the gas station had left me there and refused to help.

So, he called the owner of the gas station up and made him come down in the middle of the night to fill up my gas tank—for free. Then the sheriff calls his wife and lets her know what’s going on. She tells him to offer to bring me over to their place for the night. Mrs. Sheriff proceeds to feed me, let me take a shower, and give me a place to sleep until the next morning.

Then she feeds me again, packs me a lunch for the road, gives me $20 in cash, and sends me on my way. It was seriously one of the most wholesome things that has ever happened to me.

RhinestoneHousewife

44. Angels in the Heavens

When I was really ill in October 2017, my father also became even more ill than I was in another country. There was nobody else around for him who actually gave a darn, so I had to fly over there to see and support him. I planned to bring him home with me after he had recovered from his surgery. I had just been through a lot of trauma, and I was in no physical or emotional state to be getting on a plane—but there was literally no other option.

The flight was only around two hours long, but even that was way too much for someone as weak and frail as I was at that time. When I was waiting in line to board the plane, I could immediately feel myself getting dizzy and panicky—but that got a lot worse when I got onto the plane and when it started to take off. I started having a full blown panic attack, hyperventilating and crying in my seat.

I was sitting at the window, and there was a rather large man sitting in the middle with his daughter on the outer seat. The man noticed me crying, and he and his daughter switched seats. She took my hand and said something along the lines of “You’re okay, we’re here. There’s no need to hold this anxiety back, we’re not going to judge you, just let it happen and everything will be alright.”

She just hugged me and told me she’s so sorry while I hysterically cried. Once we landed, she and her father drove me in their car directly to the door of the hospital my dad was admitted to (over an hour away). They even offered to book me a hotel for a night or two, but thankfully I already had my accommodations sorted out. I do not know what I would have done without those people that day. We have each other on Facebook now, and she still occasionally checks in with me to this day.

theghostofborat

45. License to Give Thanks

On a Monday afternoon, I came home from work to find a letter in the mail. It was addressed by hand and the return address wasn’t familiar. I thought to myself “this can’t be good!” I opened the envelope to find my driver’s license and a note. I was unaware that I had even been missing my driver’s license. Apparently, on the prior Saturday, I had managed to drop it from my wallet somehow.

This nice person found it on the sidewalk, went home, wrote her note, addressed an envelope to me, and put a stamp on it, then deposited it into a mailbox in time for the Saturday pickup. By Monday, it was already back safely in my hands before I had even realized that it was missing.

conditerite

46. Investing for the Family

My grandmother has shown me a bank account that was linked with a trading portfolio, current worth is 100k, she says that she will maintain control till I have a family. My grandmother worked for RJ Reynolds along with my grandfather back in the heyday, when she retired she invested both of their retirement packages and tripled it. She has already done the 100k thing for my Aunt’s kids, I’m the last one without a family.

Thegreatherakles

47. Lobster Box

I’d say for me it was those days as a kid when I was just getting into drawing and art in general. My family would bombard me with all kinds of art stuff. Even some strange ones like colored pencils that looked like they were pulled straight from a tree. Bark on them and everything. I still have those saved somewhere.

But the most thoughtful gift I’ve ever heard of wasn’t for me but for my grandparents. It was from my dad. He’d given them a box with all the stuff you’d need for dinner and movie. Except he went to great lengths like supplying the candy, popcorn, napkins, silverware, salt and pepper shakers. Just anything you’d really think of for dinner and a movie. Except also included were two live lobsters in this big box with everything else.

My grandparents got such a kick out of it.

GutterBunnyBelle

48. Sweet and Sad

Mine is more of a series of gifts, and I have a little story. When I was really young, we would go visit my grandparents occasionally. I remember my grandpa always giving me coloring books and markers/colored pencils. It may not seem significant, but it meant a lot to me. After he passed away, I would always get excited about going to grandma’s, only to remember that my favorite drawing partner wouldn’t be there.

Infinity___Now

49. For the Love of GTA

I got GTA 5, and started doing dishes. My SO said, “don’t worry baby, play your game, I’ll do the dishes.” And then she kissed me, it was a greater gift than the game itself.

Honkey

50. Box of Joy

I got pretty sad as a teenager and one of my best friends gave me a box filled with all these tiny home-made envelopes. The instructions were to open one whenever I was sad. Inside the envelopes where things to make me laugh. For example, one was an article she’d cut out of a magazine and whited out a bunch of keywords and replaced them with the word “penis.” Another was a picture of Peter Russell Clarke. I still have it 14 years later and it still has a heap of unopened envelopes. Just in case.

beetroot_miscarriage

51. Little Brother Love

When I was 13 years old I was going through chemotherapy for a fairly curable form of lymphoma. My little brothers (11 and 9 at the time) saved up weeks of allowance money to buy me a Game Boy Color and Tetris to play during my chemotherapy infusions.

I didn’t even play video games before that, but it was so sweet that they got me exactly what they would have wanted. I played it for hours and hours during treatment and hospitalizations. At 31 I still break it out occasionally when I can’t sleep and feel loved. I remain the best Tetris player I know. And even better, my brothers are still this awesome as adults.

stephlovinglife

52. Updated Diaries

For my 21st birthday, my Mom went through all her old diaries and copied every entry having to do with me since the day she found out she was pregnant. It turned out to be five volumes and they’re the most precious thing I own. She did the same for my three younger siblings. It took her about a year to do that for each one of us.

mandiefavor

53. The Favorite Book

My favorite book in high school was a paperback that had been passed around and read (and underlined, and highlighted, and signed) by 20-30 friends. By the time I reached college, the cover was gone and it was in pretty bad shape. For our first Valentine’s together, my college boyfriend bought a new copy of the book, removed the cover, reinforced it, and used it to re-bind my copy of it. It meant so, so much, and I knew he heard me when I talked about what was important to me. We were together for four years.

itsacalamity

54. T-Shirt Blanket

I made an offhand comment to my mom a few years ago that I would love to make a t-shirt blanket out of all my old t-shirts, but I am too busy and not good with a sewing machine.

Last Christmas she got me one and picked the absolute perfect t-shirts for it—ones from high school, college, summer camp, other memorable activities, nerdy shirts, etc. I made a huge clothing donation to Goodwill the previous summer, and she had gone through everything beforehand to pick out the shirts and save them for my blanket.

It was so thoughtful, I cried. I love my mom.

warriorgramma

55. The Charitable Millionaire

My “uncle” (grandmother’s cousin) bought me and my girlfriend a flat. He heard how expensive our rent would be so he said for us to find somewhere and he would pay for it and then just charged us half rent. This meant we could afford to live together in a flat there was no way we would have ever have been able to afford otherwise with much more security.

He is a self-made millionaire and thinks that young people have it much harder now and wants to help out where he can. He has also recently bought a house for the homeless and built a cancer wing at a hospital. He is a very generous man.

jackalope5225

56. Family Chips In

I went through some really rough times after I got out of the Army. I was broke.

I got a job offer 2,000 miles from home and everyone in my family gave me money on loan to make it work.

$5,000 they gave me. Due to the nature of the job I had everyone paid back in the first month.

I love my family.

HenrichButtler

57. Comic Relations

My boyfriend once created a custom crossword puzzle with questions about our relationship like the first movie we watched together, the first nickname he gave me and much more personal stuff, some of which I even had a hard time remembering but apparently he didn’t forget a thing I ever said to him.

The resolution of the puzzle turned out to be an email address and a password. Logging in to the account I discovered a cute birthday card telling me how much he loved me and a ridiculously poorly drawn comic with the both of us as cats telling a story about how he burst into my room while I was embarrassing myself singing into a dildo in my hands/paws, ending with us making out. He drew it in MS Paint, I loved it.

It was just so cute, genuine and funny, I’ll never forget it. And of course I still have the crossword puzzle and the comic.

Zaldarie

58. Being Kind in Honor of Vonnegut

I’ve always been a huge fan of Kurt Vonnegut. One summer my then boyfriend now husband and I were in a bookstore and I saw a signed KV book behind a glass case that was like $500.00, and I casually said: “Someday when I’m rich, I’m going to buy that book.”

That Christmas, we were living together and when I opened my gift that morning I immediately started crying. It was that exact signed copy. It wasn’t the book so much that made me cry, it was just the first moment I felt with confidence that someone really did love me.

Domthemod42

59. It’s The Little Things in Life

When I was a kid, my sister was dating the guy across the street. He and my sister would watch movies every Friday in our living room but I wasn’t allowed to watch because the movies would be too scary, inappropriate, etc.

One day he came over to watch a movie and I snuck in and watched a little. That movie scared the ever loving crap out of me and I got kicked out when they found out I was there. They never told me the name of the movie. Ever since then I had tried explaining the parts I saw to everyone I was friends with (before I could just Google it) and could never find out what it was. Classic “tip of my tongue” situation.

The last time I tried explaining it was to my high school girlfriend right when we started dating, when I was a sophomore. Still nothing, oh well.

For my 18th birthday, she gives me the DVD. She had done her own investigating and found out for me. It meant so much, probably the best present I’ve ever gotten. The movie was The Gate, which is still rad. I still own it!

mcdonlorama

60. The Shirt Off His Back

I loved this band “Asking Alexandria” in high school years ago. It was my birthday and it was a bad day. My friend Odarius had an Asking Alexandria shirt on and we were waiting outside to be picked up. He knew it was my birthday and that it was not a good day. I casually mentioned I like his shirt and the band, and he literally took his shirt off right there and gave it to me.

Most thoughtful gift I’ve ever received.

Thedonuthasbeeneaten

61. They’re Minerals Marie

A couple.

My dad was a geophysicist and a rock collector. He loved his rocks. He would go on a crystal dig every fall with his twin brother—World Championship Crystal dig in Mount Ida, Arkansas. They won most years. And he’d come back with five-gallon buckets full of quartz clusters and points. He also discovered eBay and our already impressive rock collection around the house grew. Every available flat surface seemed to have rocks on it. Where wine normally is held—rocks. China cabinet—rocks. Entertainment center—TV and rocks. You get the picture. They were beautiful and well displayed, but everywhere.

One time I came home from college and he’d gotten a new specimen. A cathedral geode, but instead of the normal amethyst this one was citrine. It was gorgeous—orange crystals with a dark rock outside and a white lining. I thought it was so cool and commented on it. That Christmas I opened up a very heavy package to find my own. He’d remembered that one comment and jumped on it. I have that geode in my home today—my most prized possession.

The other gift that means a lot came from my grandma. My grandma has lived in the same house for more than 50 years. She has SO MUCH stuff. Not a hoarder—her house is very neat—but she just has a ton of stuff. For birthdays and Christmas, she will usually go into her spare room and select something to give to you (along with a check- the actual present). For one of my birthdays recently she gave me a carved wooden duck. On the bottom are my dad’s initials and his age at the time—14. He had loved woodworking and this was one of his first projects. It was so sweet of her to find and give me that. I know it must have meant a lot to her—he was her baby boy. But she gave it to me to have anyway.

hometowngypsy

62. It All Comes Around

When I was growing up my mom had a collection of little blown glass animals, including a little horse that I loved. One day I really, really didn’t want to go to school and my mom bribed me with that tiny horse to go. Eventually, she gave me the rest of her collection, which I still have. The horse I had up until last year when I bribed my daughter to go to school with it.

LevLove

63. Kids Who Pay Attention

My kids prepared a meal yesterday for mine and the wife’s anniversary. They themed everything in our wedding colors and had everything ready when we got home from work. It was very kind. Balloons, cake, pudding. Everything made at home with the help of their Grandma.

I was never so thoughtful as a child and felt somewhat guilty for being such a pain in the ass to my parents when I was a kid.

shambrgler

64. Books Which Shaped Her Future

I’m an autistic woman who loves animals, and I have had zoology as a special interest ever since I can remember. When I was 14 or so, my aunt sent me a book by Temple Grandin titled Animals Make Us Human.

I had no idea who that was or why she sent me the book, but I read it. I quickly realized it was written by a woman who is autistic just like me and loves animals, just like me. The book itself went into depth about animal behaviors and how it relates to human behavior, but I was hooked mostly because of who the author is.

I quickly finished it and my aunt sent me another book by her. I read that, too. The main takeaway for me was that there is a person a lot like me out there, living a successful adult life, and thus it’s possible for me to live and be successful. I am not doomed by autism, and, in fact, it can actually help me, such as with the razor-sharp focus I gain on my subjects of interest.

I’m now a biology major focusing primarily on epidemiology and wildlife biology a year away from getting my Bachelor of Science degree in Biology. Those books really helped shape my future, and I am grateful to my aunt for knowing how to encourage me. Also, Temple Grandin is my hero, and so is my aunt.

SarahTheJuneBug

65. The Importance of Knowing One’s Roots

I’m Native American married to a white man, I’m secretly so worried about my kids not appreciating & loving their Native roots. My best friend (who’s not Native) knows of my worries and my son recently started reading. So, for Christmas, she bought him about 20 books of Native American stories/adventures/history for kids. He genuinely loves reading them before bed and her gift has meant the world to me. She helped plant a seed.

painteddesert0311

66. Painted Memories

My sister gave me a painting of my friend and me. He died when we were young and we never got to take a picture together. To this day that painting stands next to a set of Hot Wheels cars he gifted me the year he died.

milanp98

67. The Beatles Gift

I was given an “Old Brown Shoe” Beatles album signed by John Lennon from my ex. Her dad was an old celebrity photographer so she had it lying around. I’m a giant Beatles fan so it really meant a ton.

KidMikey

68. Special Recipes

My mom made my sister and I each a kitchen towel printed with scans of six family recipes in her handwriting. Some of them are very dirty, hard to read, but it’s very special to me.

misshome

69. A Golden Friend

I have a chronic illness, and after I’ve been active, I need a LOT of recovery time.

I have a friend who understands it and brought me a blanket. Not just any blanket, but a hand-woven cashmere blanket. This is the friend who also sends me random food parcels whenever she knows I can’t cook, would call around for five minutes whenever she knows I haven’t seen anyone except my husband for a few days, and generally supports me. We don’t see each often, but she’s my oldest friend.

Mimacat

70. Seeing in Colors

In my early 20s, I would always go for walks with my mom because I was teaching her about counting calories and how a calorie deficit would help her to lose the weight she had been trying to get off for years and years. Since I have colorblindness, I would constantly have to ask her what color certain flowers were, or what color a bird or car was, stuff like that.

I also have a 2000 Honda Civic that my dad pitched in to help me buy when I was 15. It was still the car I had been driving through high school and college, all the way up to where I am today working full time out of college. The one problem with the car is that the radio doesn’t work and neither does the cd player, but even with those issues I am happy with it and would love to drive it until it no longer works.

Fast forward to earlier this year. My parents, who both were unemployed at the time, threw me a very unexpected surprise birthday party on my 25th birthday with all my closest friends and a lot of extended family. The next day when it was just me, my parents, and two brothers celebrating on my actual birthday as a small family get together, they gave me cake and gifts. My unemployed parents went out of their way to get me colorblind glasses and fixed the entire radio system and speakers in my car.

Now, I rarely cry and never do in front of people, but I couldn’t help it at that point. It wasn’t really the gifts, but just the thought that I meant so much to them, especially in a time where spending that kind of money wasn’t possible; I know they didn’t have the money for it. I was in tears as I walked around with my dad with my new glasses on, seeing some colors for the first time among the things that I had looked at millions of times before.

But really, I could’ve done without the gifts at that point because I knew how much they really loved me. I made sure to pay for their groceries for a few months just in appreciation of them since they weren’t working, and I took them out to dinner at their favorite places every other weekend or so, and I wouldn’t let them ever pay. When my mom told me I needed to stop, I told her that money comes and goes, but family is forever.

Gsw-

71. The Generous Crystal

I was hanging out with a well-known rock musician I’d grown close to when out of the blue he placed a pink heart-shaped rose crystal into my palm and said it connected us on a cosmic level—that any time I needed to talk I should just hold it in my hand and think of him and he’d know.

I laughed it off because he’d recently started to believe in some weird New Age stuff that I couldn’t fathom and it was really out of character. He was usually just a chill guy with a great sense of humor.

Anyway, we were in California at the time (of course!) and he went back to his country soon afterward and I returned to mine. Kept in touch as usual, but one day on a whim I decided to “try” the crystal and he phoned me IMMEDIATELY. No joke. Six-hour time difference too, and it was late. He teased me about not believing his promise but I chalked it up to coincidence…

Until it happened again. I was in the bathtub playing with the crystal and I thought of him, mentally asked him to call, and the phone rang. Got out, answered, yep, it’s him. After the third time it freaked me out and I never used it that way again, but for years after he died, holding it was the only thing that could pull me out of my darkest depression. I’d just feel such love and comfort emanating from the crystal every time.

These incidents occurred in the late ’80s/early ’90s and I still have the crystal. What’s crazy is that he was battling his own demons that would eventually consume him, and I was just a typical teenage girl with typical teen angst, ten years his junior, yet he gave me a gift that probably saved my life, though he was powerless to save his own. To this day I still don’t know if it’s all been a wild coincidence or if he managed to discover something beyond our understanding…

Permalink

72. Magical DVD

It’s small but meant the world to me. My family wasn’t really into documenting things growing up and my dad died when I was a kid so I had just a few pictures and an old home movie from Christmas ’91. Every year or so I’d pop in the tape and watch the 5ish minutes of my dad and I’d remember his expressions and his voice and it helped when I felt down about it.

It’s a nearly 30-year-old tape and the quality has been dropping over the years. I popped it in this past November (anniversary of his death) and the tape was grainy and the sound was spotty and crackly to the point I couldn’t hear his voice at all. I was crushed. I was bummed about it for a month and on Christmas morning my wife hands me a card and inside it was an unlabeled DVD. She had it transferred over and the guy who did it did some magic and the sound was back and perfect. I watched it, cried my eyes out and my sons got to clearly hear their grandfather’s voice for the first time.

righthanddan

73. Leave Your Troubles at the Tree

I came home from work one day to find my dad in my front yard planting a mini pine tree. It’s still only like three feet tall to this day. I asked him what was up as I walked up to my door, wondering why he and my girlfriend were covered in sweat and dirt in the Florida heat. He pointed to the tree I hadn’t noticed yet and said “I bought you a trouble tree.”

My whole life, my parents kept a tree near the front door, and they always said that when you get home, you leave all your troubles from the outside at the tree, so you’re at peace in your house. It’s always served as a reminder to let yourself be at ease when you are at home.

Snazzywaffles

74. Student Reciprocation

A music box from a former student with an engraved plate on the top that reads: “Thank you for giving me the gift of music. Now I give it back to you.”

Back2Bach

75. Feeding the Homeless

To give you some context: I’m homeless and ended up out of my house after coming out as trans.

December, my savings were starting to run out, and slowly but surely I could afford to feed myself less and less. On the day before winter break, my friend showed up and says she has a Christmas present for me, but we have to walk there. She takes me to the university’s market.

She holds out her ID and says, “This has $174 dining dollars left on it. Buy as much as you can. Merry Christmas.” I bought so much, I could feed myself for a month. I’ll never forget it.

teenytinybaklava

76. Handmade Wedding Dress

My mom made my wedding dress. She made something that fit my personality and fashion tastes beautifully. She recently made my sister’s wedding dress and it was even more beautiful.

Angel-A_44

77. Cousinly Love

When I was growing up my cousin, who is 11 years older than I, would give me attention. I was highly abused so this meant everything to me. We are still very close (I’m 58, she’s 69) and for a real treat, we exchange Christmas boxes. Last year, she sent me a beautiful bed quilt that she had made for me. I was deeply moved by this as it means now that she’s constantly with me. She keeps me warm and taken care of. I love you, Janet.

Puddin

78. Meaningful Valentine’s Day

Back in elementary and middle school, I was the real unpopular nerdy kid who always was carrying a different thick book every couple of days. I think I practically lived in the library. As an unwanted side effect, I got bullied pretty hard and was never really the object of any attention from the opposite gender, so when Valentine’s day would roll around I never got any of the “school-sanctioned” carnations or candy and never received any gifts.

As one can imagine this really killed any self-confidence I might have had and (on top of other things that were going on in my life) made my then depression a lot worse.

Fast forward a couple years to eighth grade and my best friend at the time gives me a gift bag with a heart-shaped box of chocolate and a Siamese cat stuffed animal. It was totally platonic and I guess she just thought I deserved something to look forward to and enjoy like other people on Valentine’s.

I’m now 26 and we aren’t in contact anymore but I still have that stuffed Siamese cat sitting on my bedside table.

God-chan

79. An Incredible Daughter

When my wife and I got married in 2004, we adopted a petite black lab mix female from a dog pound in Japan. She traveled the world with us, was there for us when my wife and I went through two back to back miscarriages, and was my best friend. She died in 2015.

For the holidays in 2016, my daughter (11 at the time) spent her lunch money the previous February (the anniversary of our dog’s death) on a small figurine of a black lab puppy that looked just like ours, wrapped it up, and gave it to me on the morning of December 25th. She told me that since I always miss my dog, she wanted me to have something to remind me of her.

I spent most of the day in tears, because at 37 years old, it’s the most meaningful thing anyone has ever given me (other than my wife giving me two amazing ankle biters who grew up to be smarter than I ever will be).

InsidiousToilet

80. Souvenirs

I married my wife in Bermuda on a beautiful pink sand beach. My brother was my best man and was great all throughout the day. But the cherry on the cake was at the end of the evening when all the proceedings were done and everyone was pretty drunk and having a nice time. He comes over and hands me two glass bottles full of pink sand. My face was one of confusion. He tells me it’s the exact same sand my wife and I stood on when we got married.

Total cost? Probably $2. But I’ll be damned if I didn’t bawl like a damn baby. It’s one of the greatest gifts I’ve ever received and thanks to him, my wife and I now have the exact spot we married sitting with us in our front room as a decoration.

bloodyhellalex

81. The Butterfly Effect

For Christmas two years ago, my mother had sent my grandmother a butterfly necklace. Unfortunately, my grandmother passed away on Christmas Eve so she was never able to open the gift. My aunt sent the necklace back and my mother kept it in her jewelry box.

This year when I was getting ready for graduation, my mother told me to turn around. Pretty commonplace since I never wear jewelry and she’s always insisting I wear something. When I looked in the mirror, it was my grandmother’s butterfly necklace. One of my grandmother’s final wishes was to see me graduate college, and this was my mother’s way of making sure she could see it.

I cried. A lot.

awakeandalarmed

82. Rekindling the Passion

Used to do B&W photography when I was young … even managed a few solo shows. Then I move to a different province, hit tough times, and end up having to sell all of my gear. Canon A1, ZoneXI field camera, a dozen lenses, 4×5 darkroom enlarger and all the darkroom goodies … everything.

Moved back home, got my life back on track, and then meet my future wife. I tell her my photography past and its unfortunate outcome, and think nothing more of it. My birthday arrives many months later and I open a tall cylindrical tin from her. Inside is a mint condition Canon A1 camera body, and tickets to see David Bowie.

I literally cried.

Did I mention I also told her I didn’t think I would ever get to see Bowie live?

I asked her to marry me a month later.

TihSon

Heartwarming Gifts facts

83. Cool Dad

A rock.

Seriously. When I was growing up, I had a special boulder I would sit on. There was a tree growing right next to it, providing perfect shade, and the slope of the rock was just right for leaning against. I spent half my childhood/early teenage years out there reading and daydreaming with my dog; it was where people knew to look for me if they couldn’t find me in the house.

When my parents got divorced and had to sell the property, my dad took a sledgehammer out to the rock, broke a big chunk off, and gave it to me so I would have a piece of it wherever I go. I cried like a baby.

Platypus_Pie

84. Anonymous Angel

One Christmas time was lean for me and the family. Was recently out of work and really had no way of getting the kids anything decent for Christmas.

Out of the blue, this guy shows up on my door, confirms my name, and hands me a gift bag and a GARBAGE bag full of wrapped toys, even a couple things for me and the missus. Also a $200 gift card to Fred Meyer.

To this day, don’t know who my secret angel was, but it was just the best gift ever.

FamilyBannerMichael

85. Always Check the Bag

A friend gave me a stuffed bear during the toughest part of my life, and naturally, I kept it on a shelf.

Over a year later, I discovered there was a piece of paper in the bag she gave it to me in and it was folded in half and had writing on all sides. I cried like a baby.

Stunt-Driver

86. Arms Control

When I was ten years old, I had to have my arm rebroken at the hospital because it didn’t heal properly. A lady walking by heard me scream when they broke it, and waited outside the room for an hour to give me five dollars and tell me it was going to be okay. It definitely helped ease the pain a bit.

PrePreacherLife

87. Checking In

One afternoon, I was carrying my sobbing infant in the grocery store while waiting in line to check out. I was super overwhelmed, as it was my first trip out after my son was born. As this was unfolding, a kind older man came over to me and said: “One day, you’re going to look back on this with happy memories, and maybe even miss these moments.” He then insisted that I cut in front of him in line, and even paid for all of my groceries. Boy, did that make a huge impact on me! What a wonderful man!

southernbelletx12

88. Do You Know Who I Am?

After several long delays at the airport, my flight home was abruptly canceled while I was standing in line at the gate waiting to board it. The next day was my son’s first birthday, so I needed to get home in time. I went up to the United desk and the staff refused to help me in any way. Not only could I not get onto another flight that day, but there was nothing available for me the next day either.

This was all despite the fact that I was internetting the hell out of my phone and showing them all sorts of flights listed online as available, including both direct and connecting options that would get me where I needed to be. For some reason, they were still refusing to accommodate me, and I just didn’t have the money to go and buy something else. It got to the point where I was starting to visibly lose my cool over all of this.

A guy in line stepped out after hearing me. He told them he had some crazy status at the airline, and asked to speak directly to the manager. Next thing I knew, he was transferring his own ticket on a direct flight to me so I could get home to see my baby boy. I don’t even know what happened. I tried to thank him in every way I knew how and he refused to take anything from me—he just told me that he knew what it was like from when he was younger, and that he wished there could have been someone to have done the same for him. I hugged the guy, probably against his will, and then ran to make my (AKA his) plane. I found myself in an amazing first class seat home for the first time in my life. This dude was seriously an angel and I will never forget him.

billbapapa

89. This One Has Got to Take the Cake

My birthday one year was really sucking, so I decided to go out and buy myself a cake at the grocery store. On a whim, I decided that I also wanted to get it decorated, because it was my birthday and I just wanted something a little nice to make me feel better. When the guy at the counter asked me who it was for, in order to know what name to put on it, I told him that it was for me.

He was very incredulous to the idea that I would have to buy my own birthday cake. I just kind of shrugged it off and went on to finish the rest of my shopping for groceries. He said my cake would need to be paid for at pick up. When I came back to pay for and pick up my cake, a different person was at the register—and to my surprise, she said my cake had already been paid for.

It was also decorated a bit more than I thought it should have been. I have not seen that guy working there since and, in my head, I now think of him as the cake fairy. It was a really good cake, too. Unfortunately, I still cried while eating it because the entire rest of the day sucked—but it was definitely a good cake and an awesome thing to experience.

mamblepamble

90. Everything’s Coming Up Roses

I was in a deep depression some years back and decided to just take a walk in the park. I had been sitting down for some minutes when a kid, who could not have been more than four years old, came up to me and handed me three yellow sunflowers. This little random act of kindness became one of the most memorable moments of my life.

AgeOfWomen

91. Down in the Ditch

One time, I fell asleep at the wheel and drove my car into a ditch right at the entrance to my street. It must have been around 1 AM. This guy was outside on his porch having a smoke in just a white T-shirt, rain boots, and boxers. He yells over to ask me if I need any help. I let him know that I do. He asks me to give him a sec. Within a couple of minutes, he brings out his old Toyota 4 runner and hitches my car to it. He pulls my car out in no time. I have never seen him since and have no idea who he was.

StinkyJockStrap

92. Next in Line

Last year, on my birthday, I decided to treat myself by stopping to grab a cup of coffee on my way to school. I ordered my coffee—but before they could even get to the next customer’s order, they told me that my card was declined. Uh oh. I try again but to no avail. Now my drink is ready and I can’t pay, and a line is beginning to form. I had no idea what to do at this point.

Then, all of a sudden, the guy behind me came forward and volunteered to pay for my drink. I tried to decline the offer, but he insisted. It didn’t seem like much of a big deal to him, but it really made my birthday.

MattDemp

93. Coffee Break

A homeless guy camped out in front of a Dunkin Donuts I was eating in ran inside to warn me that the meter maid was coming. He saved me $45, yet he wouldn’t even let me buy him breakfast to say thank you!

mistapapageorgio

94. Emotional Security Guard

The most underratedly kind thing a stranger has ever done for me was the time a TSA guard, while checking my ID, mentioned how he could tell I had lost weight and complimented me on it. That was pretty awesome, I must say!

IBlazeMyOwnPath

95. Sweeter Than Chocolate

I was once feeling really down because of school, and also just life in general. I stopped at a convenience store on the way home one day to pick up a bit of chocolate to make myself feel better. The guy at the register must have noticed how miserable I was looking, because he let me have the chocolate bar for free. It was a really simple act of kindness, but it almost made me tear up in the middle of that convenience store. It instantly improved a lousy day for me, whether the guy realized it or not.

angry__donkeys

96. Bathing Suit or Birthday Suit?

One time on a cruise ship when I was young, my bathing suit flew off of one of those wave machine things in the pool. To be clear, it didn’t just slide down a bit, exposing some of my butt. It came completely off. WHOOSH. Trying to stand, keep my boyhood covered, and look for my trunks all at once in the middle of a tsunami was tricky to say the least. All of a sudden, a towel from out of nowhere hits me in the face. Thank you, kind stranger!

NowYouzeCantLeave

97. Carry On My Friendly Stranger

I was moving out of an apartment, trying to pack some pretty heavy things into my car. A stranger witnessed this, offered to help, and spent a solid hour helping me carry furniture, densely packed clothes, and a TV down some stairs into my car. He was either an absolute gentleman or a future robber who was scouting out my apartment building for entry points. Either way, he definitely helped me a lot!

NigNagNug

98. Not Today, Fellas!

I was waiting at a train station in South Auckland at around 10 at night. For those who are not so familiar with my home country of New Zealand, let’s just say that South Auckland has a reputation for being a “bad place.” Anyway, our trains system forces us to pre-purchase our tickets at vendors. So, me being a skinny young naive 16-year-old, I openly pull out my wallet full of cash to buy my ticket without realizing that a train station full of criminals and druggies were surrounding me.

I grab my ticket and sit down as far away from everyone else as possible, just to avoid potential trouble. Then, as I’m sitting there reading a book, these two fairly large guys begin to walk up to me demanding my cash. Then, seemingly from out of nowhere, this man runs up to us, jumps in between me and the guys, and shouts “NO, NOT TODAY, WALK AWAY!” The men flee, and this helpful stranger then sits with me for the rest of my time there to make sure that nothing else happens. When my train finally comes in, my new hero sees me off and then continues on his way as if it was all no big deal.

Hotmexicanez

99. A Fella With an Umbrella

One afternoon back in my university days, I walked out of class into a summer sunshower. Just a few short instants later, some stranger walking by offered to share his umbrella with me. For the record, I am an ugly nerdy guy, so there were no ulterior motives if that’s what you’re thinking. He was just a sincerely nice guy who decided that he felt like sharing his dryness with a stranger. We parted ways at a corner and I thanked him. Then, another person going my way saw this—and offered me their umbrella. I made it mostly dry to my next class thanks to the kindness of these strangers.

pamplemouse

100. Taking Care of Business

A professional-looking guy in a three-piece business suit got out of his car in the snow and walked through a large snow bank on the side of the road to help me push my car out. He did this voluntarily, purely out of the goodness of his heart.

ejsandstrom

101. Forever Holding His Peace

I was supposed to be a groomsman in a wedding and my flight got delayed. Like really delayed. Delayed so bad that Delta brought out the “We are sorry” care packages and complimentary pizza. Towards the seventh hour, I started getting pissed that the front desk wasn’t giving us answers. Well, while I was going off, some seven-foot-tall guy saw me, got in line for the complimentary pizza, and, to my surprise, handed me the plate that he had picked up. I ate the food and reflected on what a jerk I must have seemed like to everyone there.

A little later, he found another flight and was kind enough to have asked the front desk women to book two tickets instead of one. He gave me the other ticket. Apart from the nod I gave him once we got off the plane, I never saw that dude again or even learned his name. I made it to the wedding just in time.

Moots_point

102. Easter Parade

At Easter, I was ten dollars short in the grocery line. We really needed food, so I was about to put back the two chocolate Easter bunnies and the jelly beans I had, when all of a sudden the lady behind me shouts, “Don’t you dare!”

She paid for all of them. I cried and thanked her repeatedly.

PenelopeMarsh

103. Home Is Where the Heart Is

I bought my condo at 27 from a guy I had never met. There were a lot of offers way over asking price in a very competitive market, but I offered what I could. I had lost out on many places before over months of searching, being outbid by ridiculous cash offers I had no chance of beating. I fell in love with this neighborhood and made two other failed offers here earlier, so I just wrote him a letter telling my story, explaining how hard I’d tried to save everything I could to buy my first place and make a home to start really establishing myself.

He ended up taking my offer over several much higher bids because he sympathized with my story. He himself had apparently bought this place decades ago when he was a struggling 27-year-old trying to establish himself. My letter resonated with him to the point where, even though he probably could have made another $40k easily, he instead felt that he wanted to give me the same opportunity he had once had. I’m forever grateful to him for that, even though we have never met.

HorseMeatSandwich

104. O Positive

The nicest thing a stranger ever did for me was donate their own blood to save my life. Thank you, blood donor!

inksmudgedhands

105. Finally, Someone Who Gets Me!

I was walking back from Starbucks after meeting my ex to finalize some financial issues. I was smoking a cigarette when a man approached and asked if I had an extra smoke. I usually just decline or ignore any person who approaches me when I’m out and about in the city, as many turn out to be nothing more than beggars looking for free handouts.

However, this guy seemed genuinely nice, and he looked like he was having just as bad a day as I was. I reached into my pocket and looked in the pack I had. I forgot that I had been smoking the last one. I told him that I was sorry and that I had another pack in my car a few blocks away, if he wanted to walk up there with me.

He accepted and we got to talking. As the conversation progressed, he explained that he had recently lost his job and was now pretty much homeless for the first time in his life. He was coming from an interview for a job that he didn’t get, and I knew he wasn’t lying because I actually used to work at his school that closed down and we knew some of the same people.

When I got to the car, I offered to split the pack with him and he refused. He just wanted the single one that he had originally asked for. We were both going through the roughest times of our life, and had both previously quit smoking for years. I could tell that he was really struggling, so I reached into my pocket and offered him the last 20 bucks I had.

At first, he adamantly refused the gift, but eventually, I convinced him to take it. I, at least, had another unemployment check coming and a roof over my head. The man then proceeded to hug me, and we were almost brought to tears. He then insisted upon giving me the hoodie he was wearing, and wouldn’t take no for an answer. It was definitely a pretty nice one, not exactly my style but likely worth a few dollars on the street.

He wouldn’t take no for an answer and I eventually accepted this thoughtful gift. I still wear it occasionally, usually when working outside, and I am reminded of our little encounter and how caring and nice he was to me every time I put it on. I hope he’s finally doing well and I am glad that I never got into as bad a situation in life as he had been in.

wezelx

106. A Shot in the Dark

I was sitting at a train station next to a girl who looked rather sporty. I noticed she was writing something, but didn’t pay any attention to what it might have been. Fast forward half an hour. She gets up, hands me a note, and walks off. Of course, I wait until she leaves before I open and read it. I was very curious as to what the message might be.

Turns out she had written “You’re really beautiful, don’t know if you’re interested but here’s my number,” followed by her phone number and several naughts and crosses. I never contacted her because I’m very shy, but I carried her note in my wallet for several years. It was a brilliant pick me up at a time when I had been feeling very low.

Username1930

107. It’s Raining Pennies From Heaven

I was on the bus freaking out about not knowing how I was going to be able to feed my fiance and myself, as I was the only person working at a 100% commission job. A stranger heard me freaking out and on the verge of tears on the phone. He politely alerted me I had “dropped” some money on the ground. It was 40 dollars, and my fiance and I savored every penny. I never got to thank this guy, but I went and quit that job about a week or so later. Thankfully, I was able to find something way more stable to replace it with.

AGGroAzteca

108. Missed It By That Much

When I was around eight years old, I was crossing a street without much looking. As soon as I started crossing, a stranger pulled me back by my shirt. Of course, a car flew by that same moment. Thank you, stranger.

jkovvv

109. Driven

About three or four winters ago, I had a 5 AM shift on Thanksgiving. It was freezing cold outside and I had to catch public transportation to get to my job. So there I was waiting on the street corner for a good ten to twenty minutes, freezing my tail off. Suddenly, a taxi driver waves me down and asks if I need a ride. Me being super broke at the time, I couldn’t afford it so I waved him off.

A couple of minutes pass by and he drives by me again, waving me down once more. I tell him that I can only afford to take public transportation. Nevertheless, he insists on driving me—telling me not to worry about the money. I hopped in the car and he was the most gracious person in the world, taking me right to where I needed to be and asking absolutely nothing in return.

s0mexguy

110. That Guy Was Key

I was out clubbing one time and unknowingly dropped my house keys. The next day, I get a letter in my mailbox with a guy’s phone number. I text him. It turns out he had found my keys at the club, recognized the building they belonged to (student housing), came to the building, and tried using the keys on every single mailbox until he found the right one. Then gave them back to me. He was the nicest guy I’ve ever seen, and I am definitely glad he didn’t choose to rob me instead!

the_nils

111. One Good Turn Deserves Another

Around 2008, I helped a guy go through TSA at Laguardia airport in New York City. He had never flown before, and had no idea what he was allowed to take on the plane or what the whole security process entailed. Security told him he couldn’t use the plastic bags he had all his stuff in. What rattled me was the fact that he was shoving pairs of very new Nike shoes into a trash bin.

I couldn’t fathom why, so I went over to ask him. He explained his situation. I told him that if he held tight, I’d go through security, buy him a carry-on, pass it over to him, and let him use it to get his stuff through. He handed me a hundred dollar bill and I gave him my crochet project bag to hold as insurance. I got him a suitcase, went back, gave him it along with the change, and showed him everything he needed to do to get through.

He thanked me and we hugged, each going our separate ways. My flight turned out to be delayed by three hours at the last minute, and I was already exhausted. I used my purse as a pillow, covered myself up with my coat, and fell asleep against a wall. When I woke up, there was a fuzzy travel blanket, a convertible neck pillow, an eye mask, a bag of cookies, and a little plush stuffed dog with a note tucked in his collar. The man I had helped stuck this gift between me and the wall and never woke me up. I ended up traveling for 11 more hours and that thoughtful little package saved my sanity. Random airport dude, I’m glad you got to keep your kicks, and I still have the puppy! I named him LG.

berthejew

112. Angels in the Heavens

When I was really ill in October 2017, my father also became even more ill than I was in another country. There was nobody else around for him who actually gave a damn, so I had to fly over there to see and support him. I planned to bring him home with me after he had recovered from his surgery. I had just been through a lot of trauma, and I was in no physical or emotional state to be getting on a plane—but there was literally no other option.

The flight was only around two hours long, but even that was way too much for someone as weak and frail as I was at that time. When I was waiting in line to board the plane, I could immediately feel myself getting dizzy and panicky—but that got a lot worse when I got onto the plane and when it started to take off. I started having a full blown panic attack, hyperventilating and crying in my seat.

I was sitting at the window, and there was a rather large man sitting in the middle with his daughter on the outer seat. The man noticed me crying, and he and his daughter switched seats. She took my hand and said something along the lines of “You’re okay, we’re here. There’s no need to hold this anxiety back, we’re not going to judge you, just let it happen and everything will be alright.”

She just hugged me and told me she’s so sorry while I hysterically cried. Once we landed, she and her father drove me in their car directly to the door of the hospital my dad was admitted to (over an hour away). They even offered to book me a hotel for a night or two, but thankfully I already had my accommodations sorted out. I do not know what I would have done without those people that day. We have each other on Facebook now, and she still occasionally checks in with me to this day.

theghostofborat

Sources: 1, 2, 3

Sources123

Sources: 1, 2, 34, 5, 6


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