Random acts of kindness make huge impact in our community

Published 9:36 am Monday, February 29, 2016

Every once in awhile a story surprises you and reminds you of the general kindness and thoughtfulness of the human race.

We published such a story this week.

It started out with a fairly typical fire call on Thursday morning. Firefighters were dispatched to the 400 block of North Fourth Street in Niles on a report of smoke in a residence that contained four apartment units.

A fire was found in the attic and crews from several different departments fought the stubborn blaze for multiple hours in the cold Michigan winter weather.

What made the story interesting had nothing to do with the fire itself.

Across the street, 10-year-old Kate Hill and her family were at home because school was called off due to weather.

The girl watched the firefighters work in the snow and thought they looked cold.

Unprompted, she decided to make hot chocolate for the firefighters. Her 4-year-old sister Claire added marshmallows and Kate put on her coat, gloves and boots and personally delivered a tray of eight cups of hot cocoa to the firefighters.

The girl’s kind gesture struck a chord with the firefighters, many of whom volunteer to do the life-saving work.

One firefighter took time out to sit in the snow and chat with the girl, asking her about herself and telling her how much her actions meant to him and his fellow firefighters.

We published the story on Friday and it got great response, especially from people reading the story on our Facebook page.

The story was shared by several different firefighters and public safety departments, showing Kate’s generosity resonated with people all over southwest Michigan.

Her story is a fine example of how a small act of kindness can have a big impact.

We applaud Kate and hope others can use her example to spread good will in their own daily lives.

If we all did that, the world would be a far better place.


Opinions expressed are those of the editorial board consisting of Publisher Michael Caldwell and editors Ambrosia Neldon, Craig Haupert, Ted Yoakum and Scott Novak.