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What Random Act of Kindness Helped You?

Category: Health and Wellness Issues

September 25, 2020 — Every month The Wall Street Journal asks its readers to describe a random act of kindness that affected them. What a great idea in this time of division, economic troubles, and a corona pandemic that doesn’t want to quit. So, please use the Comments section to tell us about your experience with someone unexpectedly helping you. It could have happened since you retired, but any time in your life is fine too.

Photo by Juan Pablo Serrano Arenas from Pexels

To kick things off, here is one that happened to me while living in New York City in my twenties .

It was the late 1970’s. Coming home from work one night on the Broadway IRT express I was working with my briefcase open on my lap. Startled to hear the doors open at my stop, I jumped up to exit. But I had forgotten about the open briefcase, and its contents exploded across the subway car. Instantly people sprang into action. Two blocked the doors so they couldn’t close. Others got down on their hands and knees to retrieve my papers. One woman handed me a couple of paper clips. Property secured, I left the car, this small town boy from PA knowing that when it counts, New Yorkers come through.

Let’s hear yours – we could all use a little pick me up! Please add yours in the Comments section below.

Posted by Admin on September 25th, 2020


  1. I was riding my bike when I had a flat tire about 4 miles from home. My wife was at the doctor’s so I knew she couldn’t help. After a mile or two of walking the bike back home a man who was working in his yard called out to me. “Something wrong with your bike”, he asked. After I told him about the flat he said “bring it up here”. In his barn he had a whole workshop, the man was clearly a cyclist. He took the tire off, found the hole, and patched it up. Wouldn’t take anything from me, said he “hadn’t done anything”. So I rode home, so happy at the random generosity of strangers.

    by Admin — September 26, 2020

  2. My car broke down on the freeway and I had a trunk full of frozen food. It was a very hot day. And lady in a convertible stopped and gave me a ride to call for a tow. This was early 80s before everyone had cell phones. I was so broke and I started crying over losing all that food. While I was talking to AAA she went and bought a large cooler for me. I told her I would send her a check when I got paid. She said ” just remember to help others when they need it”. She drove me back to my car, helped load my food, and waited till AAA came. Then she drove off , waving goodbye. All my food was saved and I have since tried to help others when I can.

    by Tomi — September 26, 2020

  3. Sometimes even small acts of kindness can make a big impact. One of my sons was excited to make it onto a middle school sports team. The boys were told they needed to wear a tie on game days. At the time, I was my spouse’s caregiver (he had a terminal degenerative disease), worked a stressful job to support the family, and was raising our kids by myself. I didn’t have any family in the area to help out. I proposed a clip-on tie to my son, but you would think I had suggested that he wear a ball gown to school. I learned clip-on ties weren’t socially acceptable to 13 year old boys! The next day my son came home from school, and told me the young coach had announced he was giving all the boys a class about how to knot a tie before game day. When I thanked the coach later, he told me that he had decided to give this class to the middle school team every year since single Moms and others might need some help. He didn’t want any of the boys to feel awkward or singled out, so the class would be mandatory for everyone. The coach said he’d also have a box of ties available, in case boys “forgot” or didn’t have them at home. A small thing, but at that moment in time it was very important to my son! I still remember this man’s tact and thoughtfulness.

    by Kate — September 26, 2020

  4. I have had a few random acts of kindness that I will never forget, but just recently on a early morning on my way to volunteer I went through a drive through for a cup of coffee where I was told the car ahead of me had already paid for it. It was senior day at McDonalds and maybe coffee was only a quarter, but it made my day, I was also told the driver ahead of me told the girl at the window he was already having a bad day and needed to do something nice. I have never been so excited and grateful for a cup of coffee, and have paid that forward since.

    by Barbara — September 29, 2020

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