You never know when someone is going to do something nice for a complete stranger or how much of an impact that kind gesture will have. However after one kind soul was inspired to spread some positivity at an Indiana McDonald’s drive-through, nearly 200 people were directly impacted.
It started when a woman was picking up her meal on Father’s Day and noticed a dad with young kids in the car behind her. In honor of the holiday, she paid for the family’s meals when she pulled up to the window. “She looked back and saw a father with four little kids, with a couple of Happy Meals and such,” Tammi Hammonn, a manager at the McDonald’s, told CNN. “She said she was going to pay for him, and to tell him Happy Father’s Day.”
That kind gesture didn’t end with their car. From 8:30 p.m. to midnight, each driver that followed paid for the car’s order behind him or her. In total, 167 people paid it forward that evening. “I had people telling me, ‘No, it’s going to stop here. It’s going to stop at 100. You’re not going to make it past,'” Hunter Hostetler, a drive-through cashier, told WDRB.
However, the chain of good deeds almost didn’t last as long as it did. When one person wanted to opt out of the act of kindness, McDonald’s employees pooled their money to pay the $27 bill for the next car. After that, the streak of kindness only broke because the restaurant closed for the night — despite the last woman hoping to pay for someone else’s meal. “We had to tell her we were so sorry, and we needed to close,” Tami said. “But it would have gone further.”