We’ve all heard the jokes about cops and doughnuts.
I hadn’t thought about where that stereotypical joke came from before I heard about this sweet little girl and her story with a cop.
According to Atlas Obscura, when cops started driving cars instead of patroling on foot in the early 20th century, doughnut shops were one of the few places open late at night, and they would stop there to fill out paperwork, grab a snack and some coffee, and make emergency calls if need be (there weren’t always cell phones, you know!).
So the phrase is a tired cliché that came from a genuine symbiotic relationship. The doughnut shops felt safe, the cops got a nice place to fuel up on caffeine, and everyone was happy — some shops even kept small desks for their local officers.
But one day, a little girl named Brooke, 9, was at a gas station — Sheetz, to be precise — looking to buy a dozen doughnut holes, probably while one of her parents fueled up.
She didn’t have enough money, but she wouldn’t be disappointed that day.
A kind state trooper behind her asked the cashier to add her doughnut holes to his bill, and she was so happy, nervous, excited — just overwhelmed with emotion — that she ran out of the building as soon as she got the pastries. Much like any other 9-year-old probably would when they’re nervous.
But when she got home, she wrote the man a note and mailed it to the local police station.
When they got it, they discovered that there was a $10 bill inside.
Once they found the officer it was intended for, they decided to do something special for Brooke. They collected and mailed her a $50 bill and a Toys R Us gift card for her generosity and kindness.
But what they didn’t expect was for Brooke to spend that gift card and money on toys to then donate to Toys for Tots. She didn’t use any of it on herself!
And so when they found out, they knew they had to do something extra special for this extremely generous girl.
So they invited her to the station and showered her with gifts, gave her a tour, and made her promise to use some of the gifts and gift certificates on herself.
According to CBS, her favorite part was getting to see and sit in the squad car. And in an interview, the reporter recounted her charitable donations and asked, “what’s wrong with you?”
Everyone laughed and Brooke said, “nothing.” Her parents can be proud of the daughter they raised, and know that she will be a kind and giving person in the future, as well.
Congratulations on being a wonderful human, Brooke! We hope you continue to pay it forward.