Stranger’s Christmas Cheer At Drive Thru Gives New Meaning To ‘Happy Meal’




One woman’s kind gesture has demonstrated that the holiday season really does bring out the best in people.

At a McDonald’s drive thru in Florida Torie Keene embraced the holiday spirit by paying for the meal of the car behind her. This gesture of goodwill then sparked a chain of 250 people who all happily paid for the meal of the stranger behind them.

Marisabel Figueroa, the cashier at the Lakeland McDonald’s, had been specifically told to say “Merry Christmas” instead of “Happy Holidays” when speaking to customers in a bid to spread the Christmas cheer.

This certainly seemed to do the trick as Keene responded by telling Figueroa that she wanted to pay for the following car’s meal and wish them a “Merry Christmas.”

Figueroa claims that when she told the following car that their meal had already been paid for the passenger was so touched by the gesture of goodwill that she decided she would pay for the meal of those in the following car.

This sparked a chain reaction at the drive thru as 250 consecutive cars happily paid for the following person’s meal with one woman even generously paying for the meals of the next three cars.




Figueroa worked a six hour shift and claimed that the chain lasted for almost the entire duration. She stated that because it just “kept going and going” she decided to keep count, saying:

“After the 15th car I started tally marking the number of people that were participating on a piece of paper.”

Keene was shocked at the continuous chain of kindness that her gesture sparked and said she was only attempting to “brighten someone’s day.”

Keene was not the only person who was surprised by the multiple acts of kindness demonstrated by the cars at the drive thru. Figuerosa stated that every passenger whose meal was paid for was “so stunned and so happy” and that she has “never experienced something like that” in the 12 years that she has worked there.

Image by Mike Mozart via Flickr under this Creative Commons License.

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About Natasha Gelder

Natasha is a freelance writer, feminist, and coffee addict based in the UK. She has a Master's degree in Literary Studies and specialised in Gender Studies throughout her time at University. She spends her free time collecting tattoos and dying her hair bizarre colours, much to her girlfriend's dismay.

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