Teens thank Ala. deputy with random act of kindness

Deputy Stone was eating lunch alone when three teenagers handed him a note


By Suzie Ziegler

LEE COUNTY, Ala.  — A Lee County sheriff's deputy is sharing how three strangers made his day with a simple act of kindness on Tuesday. 

Deputy Manuel Stone, who retold the encounter in an interview with WRBL, was taking his lunch break in uniform when three teenage girls approached him. They handed him a note and made him promise not to open it until they had left. Stone agreed.

Lee County Deputy Manuel Stone was moved when a group of teenagers left him a note, saying they had bought his lunch and thanked him for his service. (Photo/WRBL)
Lee County Deputy Manuel Stone was moved when a group of teenagers left him a note, saying they had bought his lunch and thanked him for his service. (Photo/WRBL)

"So, they left, and I opened it," Stone said to WRBL. "The note says: 'We have paid for your meal. Thank you for your service to our community.' It made me feel really good. I still get a little teary-eyed."

Stone says he has kept the note with him in his patrol vehicle since. 

Lee County Sheriff Jay Jones tells WRBL that Stone is an excellent peace officer who always puts service to others before himself.

“It means so much, more than anyone will ever know," Jones said. "It’s fascinating how a simple piece of paper can be transformed into what our peace officers consider a priceless document when the words of a youngster are applied in support of us."

Stone says his community has always been supportive. He believes the positive relationship is a testament to the training local officers receive and how they interact daily with the public, says WRBL.

Stone also says his personal background has compelled him to serve as a bridge during times of tense discussion about race relations and law enforcement in America.

“I’m literally in the middle," he told WRBL. "I am white. I am black, and I’m police. I am smack dab in the middle, so I am connected and have experiences on all three sides."

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