Dying teen's final wish is to inspire 'mass act of kindness'
Posted January 25
NEW BRUNSWICK, Canada — The dying wish of a Canadian teenager is simple, yet profound: Leave a mark on the world by inspiring those in it to be kind.
At just 17 years old, Becca Schofield has been given less than a year to live, according to CBC News. The New Brunswick teen had been battling brain cancer for two years, and while her family thought she had finally conquered the disease for good, doctors found two new tumors back in November.
The tumors, doctors said, were inoperable. The prognosis came as a shock.
“We thought we were out of the woods,” Becca’s mother, Anne Schofield, told Today.
As the news began to sink in, Becca and her father decided to get going on a bucket list. While the list features items like traveling out of the country, playing games with her cousins and watching her favorite movie — Becca decided she wanted to include something much bigger, CNN reported.
“I wanted to leave my mark,” she said. “I wanted to do my part to change the world.”
Inspired by her father’s constant direction to be kind, Becca took to social media for help.
“No matter how young or old, rich or poor, no matter where in the world you are you can participate,” she wrote in a Facebook post. “I want to create a mass of acts of kindness!”
The challenge is pretty foolproof: Do something nice for someone else, then post about it on social media using the hashtag #BeccaToldMeTo.
“No matter who you are, if you see this message, please do an act of kindness for someone else,” the post reads. “It can be as big or small as you’d like. Donate to charity, volunteer your time, or even just do the dishes without your parents asking.”
Since Becca first introduced the hashtag on Dec. 15, her original post has nearly 1,000 shares on Facebook. Thousands of people have taken to Twitter to share their acts of kindness in Becca’s honor.
From buying coffee for a stranger to donating a teddy bear collection to a children’s hospital, people all over the world have been touched by Becca’s final request. Becca herself couldn’t be more thrilled.
“Every morning I wake up and I’m delighted that it’s still happening,” she told ABC News. “I feel like a kid on Christmas every single day. … Every day is a gift to know that it’s happening.”
For Becca’s parents, the movement has been more healing than they could have imagined.
“It makes more than three people feel good because me and my husband watch Becca’s face and see the smile on her face,” Schofield told ABC.
It’s a simple thing that has made the reality of dying a little easier on a truly remarkable girl.
“This is something other people can do and feel like they’re doing stuff for me,” she told ABC. “I love that it’s not just for the recipient and not just for the person who’s giving. It’s also for me.”
Jessica Ivins is a content manager for KSL.com and contributor to the Motherhood Matters section.