Lisa Sarber Aldrich smiled when she picked up a cake she'd ordered last week.
It said "Happy Birthday, Mandy," just as she'd ordered — although the font was shakier than what you'd normally see on a store-bought dessert.
Aldrich paid for it anyway. She wasn't bothered by the unusual writing and thought people would find it funny.
Little did she know, the purchase had gone a long way.
The cashier later told Aldrich, who lives in Caledonia, Mich., that the worker had autism and rarely got the chance to decorate desserts.
"Thank you for smiling and thanking her — even though she's not supposed to write on cakes, you probably made her day," Aldrich was told.
Aldrich recalled the exchange in a Facebook post Sunday, which had been shared over 124,000 times as of Wednesday afternoon.
She told MLive that she's a little surprised at the attention.
"I bought a cake and smiled and said 'Thank you.'"
Aldrich added that she's received thank-you messages from people with family members who have autism.
"I've gotten pictures," she said. "People are sending me pictures of their children with autism."
Frank Guglielmi, a spokesman for Meijer, told NBC News that the chain is proud to hire people who have disabilities.
"This team member was trying to provide great customer service, and our customer was very kind in the way she handled the situation," he said.
"We believe this story seems to resonate with people because it sends the message that a little kindness can go a long way."
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