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Mother's 'random act of kindness' honoring late daughter on her birthday has the internet in tears

Not only her thoughtful gesture for a stranger but also her way of coping with her loss impressed many on social media.

Mother's 'random act of kindness' honoring late daughter on her birthday has the internet in tears
Representative Cover Image Source: Pexels | Porapak Apichodilok, X | @Shhwaggy_T

Losing a loved one is hard, and dealing with the grief that follows can take a huge toll on us. For people who have lost their children, life can feel devoid of purpose. However, some resilient parents power through tough times by bringing smiles to other children and performing acts of goodwill. Ashley Santi is one such mom who honors her late daughter's birthday with random acts of kindness. In 2017, Kyle Jauregui who goes by @Shhwaggy_T on X, shared a post about Santi's sweet gesture for their sister and it blew up online.

Representative Image Source: Pexels | Ivan Samkov
Representative Image Source: Pexels | Ivan Samkov

Jauregui's sister Madison shared the same birthday as Santi's daughter McKenna Jodell, who passed away when she was just 9 months old. So, Santi chose to pay for the little girl's birthday cake and added a note. When Jauregui's family went to pick up Madison's cake from the bakery, they found out that someone had already paid for it. "My family was speechless and we just want to say thank you to McKenna's mom and wish McKenna a Happy Birthday," Jauregui mentioned in the post. "There's still good in this world," they added.


Posing beside the purple cake, Madison grinned with delight while holding Santi's handwritten note. The note read, "Dear Birthday Girl Family, In honor of my daughter's 10th birthday, I have chosen your birthday cake to pay for. Each year I do this random act of kindness because I am unable to buy my daughter a cake of her own. Today is her big double-digit birthday. Please enjoy your day." In 2008, Santi lost her only child, McKenna, whom she fondly referred to as "MBug," to a brain injury caused by a television set falling on her, per ABC.

So, since 2010, Santi has been honoring her deceased daughter's birthday by paying for a stranger's birthday cake. "I wanted to do something special for her birthday. Each year I get a blank card and fill it out with whatever comes to mind and then leave it with the bakery to give to the family," the mom told the news channel. Santi was glad to see how much traction Jauregui's post gained. "McKenna is impacting more lives than I imagined," she added. The birthday girl Madison in turn was excited, overwhelmed and "felt like she had a guardian angel looking over her," as she received some "extra love," on her 11th birthday.






More than 160,000 likes poured in for Jauregui's X post and people were inspired by Santi's wholesome gesture. "What a beautiful way to honor this person’s daughter. God bless this parent. I think I’ll start doing this on my mother’s birthday to honor her. Such a great idea," said @Cindyje52817154. "God bless you Mckenna's mom! What a wonderful way to deal with your grief. Know many people are praying for you, that your load may be lightened. Keep the faith and never give up!" lauded @ClaudetteLundy. "This is so beautiful! There truly are kind people in our world!" chimed in @AngelTracey616.

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