Feel Good

Kindness At Drive-Thru Saves A Life

You should never underestimate the impact a small act of kindness can have on someone. In fact, a kind act at a drive-thru window actually saved someone’s life.

Last month, a small newspaper in Pickering, Ontario received a letter from an anonymous person detailing the story of how they chose not to end their own life. The person was in line at a Tim Hortons drive-thru last July when the employee working the drive-thru window told them that the person in front of them had paid for their order.

The person, who remains anonymous, was so struck by the kind gesture that he or she changed their plans to end their own life.

“I wondered why someone would buy coffee for a stranger for no reason,” read the letter the person wrote to the Pickering News Advertiser. “Why me? Why today? If I was a religious sort I would take this as a sign. This random act of kindness was directed at me on this day for a purpose.”

After the kind gesture at the drive-thru window, this person decided to pay it forward. Instead of following through on plans to kill him or herself, they assisted an elderly neighbor with getting groceries from their car.

“Thank you from the bottom of my heart, and know your kind gesture has truly saved a life,” the letter read, addressing the person who paid for their order at Tim Hortons. “On July 18, 2017, I not only had a great day, I had the greatest day!”

After the newspaper published parts of the letter last month, a Pickering resident named Glen Oliver came forward as the man who performed the good deed. He says occasionally paying for the person behind him in the drive-thru is something he’s been doing for a few years.


“It’s the least I can do for some people you know?” says Oliver. “It’s like holding the door.”

Of course, Oliver never could have known that such a small gesture would have such a profound impact on one person.

“I was blown away, blown away — couldn’t believe it,” Oliver said of finding out about the anonymous letter. “It’s exponential now, you know? Like such a small, insignificant thing to most people just turned out to be … the planets align for somebody.”