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When a thief stole her flowers, she never expected what happened next


Mike Beales | CC

Zelda Caldwell - published on 08/24/17

Complete strangers remind Bozeman, Montana resident Elaine Westfall why she loves her town.

When Bozeman, Montana resident Elaine Westfall realized that someone had stolen the pot of pink geraniums from her front porch, she wrote a letter the local paper directed at the thief:

“I love Bozeman and the good people that live here. But, I guess there are bad people like you who have no respect for others,” the 74-year-old Westfall wrote. “Why not do a good deed and return my flowers to my little table on the porch. Just sneak on the porch in the middle of the night and no one will ever know.”

She never expected the outpouring of kindness she got from complete strangers. In the course of the two days after the paper published her letter, strangers left a total of 11 pots of flowers on Westfall’s porch, according to a report in the Bozeman Chronicle.

Not only did they replace her stolen flowers, but some sent cards that said, “Bozeman loves Elaine” and “Sorry about your flowers. Hope these make you smile.”

“I was very touched by their kindness, ” Westfall told the Chronicle, “I just never expected it and it just overwhelms me.”

Choking back tears, Westfall told the Chronicle that she had called relatives who live in big cities to tell them what her community had done for her.

“I’ve always loved Bozeman,” Westfall said. “It’s wonderful to live in a small town.”

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