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How a child can make a difference and other moments that made someone's day

How a child can make a difference and other moments that made someone's day

(Megan Tholen with one of the many dogs she's loved)



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SALT LAKE CITY — Every day, people find small ways to make a difference.

Each week, we share those experiences. And, today, on my sister's birthday, I want to share a story about something she did as a young girl to make a difference.

My sister has always had a deep love for animals. She spoiled our dogs, petted any animal she came in contact with and read voraciously about them. When she was about 10 years old, she started taking care of a neighbor's seeing eye dog. Once or twice a week, she would pick up the golden retriever, give it a bath, brush its hair and play with it. Her service kept the man's grooming bills down and gave the dog a break to run and jump, chase toys and play with an energetic girl. I watched my sister share the love she had with animals in a way that touched people's lives, including mine. She taught me that a person can serve anyone — even a dog.

On never knowing who needs extra help:

LLT

"I was on my way home from working at the airport. It was 1:30 a.m. when my vehicle broke down. It went to get repaired, and worrying about the cost and all was bothering me.

"The next night at the airport I had a full bus, and the parking lot was a bit confusing. One gentleman came up to me before getting off and asked if I could receive a compliment. I said, sure. When he was through, he left a tip. I had other guests who were going to the terminal, so I tucked it away and thanked him. When I got guests to their terminal and had some down time I looked at the tip. It was a $100 bill. I was so overshocked with what I received that I started crying. The compliment was worth a lot to me, but the tip was so amazing. Thank you, kind sir."

On feeling sorry for yourself:

Carolyn C.

"I was in a restaurant a few months back feeling sorry for myself, and I started to think about this column. Why didn’t someone do something nice for me, like pay for my meal or something?


Have you seen any moments of service or kindness? Do you want to share a story about something that made your day? Email a brief story (100 words or fewer) along with any photos or video to crosenlof@ksl.com.

"Then it hit me. What was I thinking, how could I be so stupid? I looked around and saw a young couple out on a date. I asked the waiter for their bill and paid it on my way out. Best thing I ever did for myself."

On having an attitude of service:

Sloan J.

"My husband and I were less than 2 miles from home one recent Sunday night when our car sputtered to a stop on the freeway exit. We had barely had enough time to turn on the hazards and begin discussing who would be willing to come help us at 10:45 at night when a car stopped for us.

"The kind stranger, upon asking what our trouble was, immediately offered to drive us to a gas station and back to our car. During the car ride, he explained he had waited two hours once for someone to stop and help him on the side of the road, and now he always stops to help. He also admitted he was having a pretty bad week and was grateful for the chance to help someone out. We were back on the road in about 20 minutes. Our hearts full of gratitude for this complete stranger who went way out of his way to help us in our time of need and would accept nothing in return."

On giving generously when you can:

Dave H.

"Last week, there was a lady who was traveling on an airline from Salt Lake City to Portland for a funeral. Well, the flight canceled and there was not another flight on that airline to rebook her on that would get her there in time for the funeral. The airline agent took her over to a competitor airline and asked if there were seats on their flight.

"The supervisor of the competitor airline was able to find her a seat on a flight but due to the lack of ticketing agreements between the two airlines, the new fare was going to cost her $800. The lady responded in tears. A completely anonymous passenger overheard the conversation and without skipping a beat, placed his credit card on the counter and paid for the lady’s new ticket to Portland. Denying any form of repayment, he boarded his flight and flew off into the horizon."

Have you seen any moments of service or kindness? Do you want to share a story about something that made your day? Email a brief story (100 words or fewer) along with any photos or video to crosenlof@ksl.com.

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Celeste Tholen Rosenlof

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