It has been five years since 24-year-old Heather Weeks died of cancer. Every year on this day, it is a painful time for her family. To try and ease the heartache, her mother Frieda came up with an idea to help others. It has, in turn, helped her heal a bit and given her something to smile about on a day that is usually so very painful.
On this day, Frieda is asking people to do random acts of kindness in memory of her daughter. The response has been overwhelming. More than 1,700 have vowed to do something nice for others.
"Whether it's buying coffee for the person in the drive through behind you, holding a door open, passing a compliment...whatever...please do something special and unexpected for someone in Heather's memory on November 14," Frieda wrote on a Facebook page dedicated in Heather's memory.
Here is how some people are spreading random acts of kindness:
Scott Lombardo wrote, "This morning I started things off by buying the car behind me at Dunkin Donuts their breakfast and while at lunch at Uno's I bought the couple sitting next to us their lunch. What a great feeling!!"
Kristen Lizzio said, "Took my grandma out too lunch treated her and also gave my server a bonus tip inside the server book I left the credit card slip along with a piece of paper explaining why I did what I did . Doing the right thing has never felt better."
"I gave a homeless man a huge hug. He said I made his day," said Barb Jenkins.
Barbara Clanton-Oyer wrote, "I held the door for someone carrying a ladder...This is not out of the norm for me so will make sure to do more random acts! #BeKind4Heather"
Heather's mother Frieda tells CNYCentral she has been so touched by the support. "Over 1700 just on FB..reading all of the posts is amazing. I can't imagine a better way to honor my beautiful daughter than all of the love that is being shown everywhere today. This is AMAZING!!!! #BeKind4Heather," she wrote online.
Heather was diagnosed with an aggressive form of colon cancer in 2008 at the age of 23. It later spread to her liver and bone marrow. She later committed herself to spreading the word about ovarian cancer because there are often few symptoms before the cancer reaches stage 3 or 4.
Her family created an organization in her memory called Hope for Heather to raise awareness about ovarian cancer. Its mission is to raise funds to support ovarian cancer research, to promote education and awareness, and to help to provide comfort to women and their families devastated by cancer.
What random acts of kindness are you doing today? Leave your thoughts below.