In Scottsburg, Indiana, the local McDonald's was fairly busy on Sunday night. It was indeed Father's Day, and the holiday struck a chord with over 167 drivers who, inspired by one act of paying it forward, continued the streak until the restaurant closed at the end of the night. So how did it all begin? As WDRB reported, with one regular restaurant-goer to the Indiana McDonald's.
Hunter Hostetler saw the beginning of the chain unfold and told WDRB:
"She saw a dad in the van behind her. He had like four kids in the car, he had a bunch of happy meals, two Quarter Pounders, a Big Mac meal and some other stuff. She was like, 'I'm going to pay for the father behind me, and I want you to tell him Happy Father's Day.'"
The chain, however, was just getting started. The dad who received his comped meal then paid for the few cars behind him. As the line grew, so did the good samaritans who paid it forward. From 8:30pm to midnight, 167 cars paid it forward, continuing the streak of one good dead.
Sunday night customer Abby Smith told WDRB why they participated, as customers 161 in the line:
"I thought it was pretty amazing. You don't see a lot of pay-it-forwards anymore. It's a great feeling to know that there's a lot of great people out there still."
It's amazing how one small act can cause a chain reaction, and this small Indiana town proved that despite everything, strangers can become part of a caring community, even if they never end up meeting face to face.
I would also like to apologize to my mother who, at Christmastime, paid it forward for the car behind her as I sat mortified in the front seat. Moms know best, y'all. Moms always know best.