Trash Men Help Family Dealing with Cancer
This is a feel-good story to start out the new year. Three daughters in the Evenson Family anxiously wait by the window each week for the garbage men to arrive. It’s not because they like to see their trash picked up. Nope. They just like waiving at the nice smiling garbage men – Brandon and Taylor. So, 5-year-old Grace, 3-year-old Rose and 2-year-old Sophia anxiously wait with binoculars in hand, smiles on their faces and hands a-waving. A bond formed between the family and the garbage men.
This feel-good story takes a sad twist when the mother writes the garbage men a note explaining why the girls will not be around for a few weeks. As it turns out, Rose has Kidney Cancer and she will be undergoing chemotherapy treatments at a hospital in another state. One of the garbage-men, Brandon, responded, “As a father of three, it changed my outlook on things. It opened my eyes … you don’t know what someone else is going through.”
Both men shared this note with their company and Hometown Sanitation Services responded with a heart-felt note and an offer for free trash service for a year. Brandon and Taylor bought the family Christmas presents and gave lots of hugs. This response brought everyone joy. Mrs. Evenson said, “Nothing in reality changes Rose’s diagnosis, but it’s those little acts of kindness. What they did made us feel like we are truly not alone in this fight.”
Dr. Hoedel’s Perspective: I have 4 children and my daughters used to have a similar relationship with the UPS driver. So, it’s easy for me to identify with this story. It’s also easy for me to say, “This could easily by my story.” Why them and not us? Stories like this remind me how fortunate we are health-wise. Stories like this also help me gain empathy for others who struggle with issues I can only imagine.
Your Turn: What thoughts and feelings do you have after reading this story?