She paid for a random father’s meal and sparked an epic pay-it-forward at a drive-thru

June 22, 2017 4:16 pm Last Updated: October 23, 2017 10:24 am


167 people in a row paid for the next customer’s meal.

McDonalds customers really were lovin’ it this past weekend, as a random act of generosity set off a chain that lasted all night.

In a news report by ABC News, a mystery woman, described as being in her 60s by the cashier, offered to pay the bill of the customer behind her in the drive-thru.

It was Father’s Day, and the woman was likely compelled to treat the guy behind her when she saw that he had four kids in the car with him. The dad was buying a round of Happy Meals for his children. After paying for her own $6 dollar meal, she secretly picked up the family’s bill for $36.

That’s an amazing act of anonymous generosity, but what’s really remarkable is what happened next.

The father was so moved that someone had paid for his meal that he agreed to pay for the meals of the next two cars.

And then they agreed to buy the next customer’s meal.

And so on and so on.

“It just snowballed from there up until we closed,” said Hunter Hostetler, the cashier who worked during that time.

By the end of the night, 167 cars had paid it forward. Customers were reportedly shocked by how high the number was when told how many people came before them.

Any of the cars could’ve accepted the free meal and went on with their life with no obligation to pass on the favor, but remarkably no one did – the chain was only broken when the last customer arrived just before closing time, with no followers left to buy for.

In fact they were so into the idea that customers reportedly didn’t even care if the stranger’s meal ended up costing significantly more than their own. And if they couldn’t pay the whole bill, the cashiers helped pay the difference out of their own pockets.

And now the McDonald’s staff has been trying to get in touch with the woman who started it all. They’ll probably treat her to a free meal – after all, she’s the only purchaser in the chain who didn’t receive anything in return. Maybe the final customer could even buy it for her, completing the circle.

But hopefully they’ll find her just to let her know just how far her generosity went. It would be great for her to know that she moved more than a hundred people to act charitably, and maybe even inspired them to start their own random acts of kindness elsewhere. That’s worth a lot more than a Big Mac and fries.

“There’s so much negativity in the world,” Hostetler said. “Something like this just doesn’t happen every day.”

Source: ABC news article.