Ellen DeGeneres episode is there to prove that one random act of kindness might change your life. When inspiring New Hampshire waitress Sarah Hoidahl paid for the lunch of two National Guard soldiers, she wasn’t waiting for a reward. She didn’t ask for recognition or expect something in repay. Actually, the 22-year-old single mother just felt like she needed to do something nice for the soldiers. Hoidahl’s random act of kindness however left a great impact in the two women’s hearts. The goodness traveled until it reached the big names in Hollywood and soon Hoidahl was a guest on Ellen DeGeneres’s where she got her biggest tip ever: $10,000!
On a regular Wednesday lunch shift, Sarah Hoidahl was waiting tables at Ruby Tuesday in Concord, New Hampshire. She noticed the two soldiers taking their time with their menus. They told her that they were furloughed due to the government shutdown and therefore on a tight budget.
Hoidahl, a true human in a senseless world, and also dating a Marine, understood what the women were going through. With the country in a difficult stage, Hoidahl felt she ought to do something to those who serve her country the most and yet are not getting paid. She felt for them, being a single mother to a 15-month-old boy and knowing how hard it could be to go on without payment. She decided to pay for their lunches. Instead of a check, she delivered a sweet note at the end of their meal. In the note she expressed her compassion and said that she paid for their lunch, also thanking them and signing her name underneath:
“Thanks to the government shutdown, the people like you that protect this country are not getting paid. However, I still am. Lunch is on me. Thank you for serving ladies! Have a good day!”
The meal cost her $27.75 and she walked home that night with only $8 in tips, but the reaction on the women’s faces was -according to Hoidahl- priceless.
The New Hampshire National Guard showed their gratitude by posting an image of Sarah alongside her heartwarming note on their Facebook page. News of the note went viral with more than 10,000 people liking and sharing the note on their Facebook profiles. Soon Hoidahl was a guest on The Ellen DeGeneres Show.
Known to always stand for honesty, equality, kindness and compassion, DeGeneres celebrated Sarah Hoidahl’s random act of kindness in a gesture that nobody would ever forget.
Firstly, DeGeneres questioned the mind-blown waitress about her life and how tough her situation was. She then paid her the $27.75 bill and discussed with her how sweet and kind her deed was. She then rewarded Hoidahl with a 50-inch Insignia TV instead of her broken one. Hoidahl had already mentioned that she didn’t watch Ellen DeGeneres’s for that reason.
The big surprise was yet to come when Ellen DeGeneres signed Hoidahl a $10,000 check to the crowd’s cheers and Hoidahl’s tears of joy and surprise. DeGeneres hugged the overwhelmed waitress and kept telling her, “You’re a good girl.”
A feel-good story with a heartwarming belief in humanity and the infectiousness of kindness. Check out the video where DeGeneres rewards Sarah Hoidahl here:
Written by: Jaylan Salah