Help us spread kindness

Published 8:30 am Wednesday, March 18, 2009

By Staff
My phone rang as soon as the NBC Nightly News ended last Wednesday. “We just saw a story about a pharmacist in Brewton,” my mother said.
That night, I received an e-mail from the Midwest Web developer who helped us with our Web site redesign. “I was so proud to be able to relate, even in just a small way, to your awesome town and its obviously wonderful people,” she wrote. “You all have a lot to be proud of. His kindness will inspire others to ‘pay it forward.’”
When Danny Cottrell first told me he planned to give away $2 bills to his employees, my first instinct was to burst into tears. I knew this would be a wonderful story to tell our readers, and I had a feeling that it would get attention beyond Brewton as well.
The story has taken on a life of its own, Danny says. He’s had calls from most of the major networks, cable news networks, and other newspapers.
All of that attention is simply extending the generosity Danny offered his employees when he gave them envelopes of $2 bills with the simple instructions: Spend it locally, and spend 15 percent on someone who needs it more.
Brewton has been in the news just about everywhere, and a lot of people are taking notice. With so much sad news lately, Danny’s “country boy’s stimulus package” has lifted spirits across the country — and helped connect Brewton to people who might never have heard of us.
In so many ways, Danny’s simple act of generosity is helping so many people, and his employees are doing exactly what he hoped they would — spending the money locally, and giving to charities.
One of the recipients was Hope Place, which provides resources for families, couples and children in our community.
A simple act of kindness — presented in a unique way — has touched lives here at home, spread wealth into the community, and touched hearts across the country.
Danny’s example — and the response to it — is a reminder of what a special community in which we live. We know there are examples of such kindnesses, big and small, throughout our community.
We love to tell those stories, and at a time like this, we could all use the boost. If you know of a friend or neighbor who deserves recognition for their acts of kindness, please e-mail me or call our office. We want to spread the word, as Danny’s story did, about our special community.
Kerry Whipple Bean is publisher of The Brewton Standard. She can be reached at 867-4876 or by e-mail at

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