Cafeteria worker breaks down when students surprise her with something she’s dreamed of for her family

Videos by Rare

Videos by Rare

Students at Elon University surprised one of their campus dining workers with a long-overdue vacation. They recently presented her with more than $6,000 so she and her family could take a trip to Disney World – something she’s always dreamed of but could never afford.

Kathryn Thompson has lived in Elon since she was born. Her parents attended the school during the 1950’s. She lives across the street from her parents’ home and has never left the state.

One Friday in September, students Taylor Zisholtz and Lucy Smith-Williams were just two of the few customers at the coffee shop, according to a post written by the students.

Thompson started to chat with them and asked where they were from.

The students say Thompson’s eyes lit up when she learned Smith-Williams was from Florida. Thompson said has always wanted to visit the Sunshine State.

“How long does it take to drive from here to Florida,” she asked. “And how much do you think it would cost for me to take my family of five to Disney World?”

“Kathryn’s eyes filled with tears as she spilled out her biggest dream in life is to take her son, daughter-in-law, and two grandsons to Disney World,” the students wrote in a post on their Go Fund Me page.

It didn’t take long for the students to appreciate Thompson’s sweet nature and hard work. That’s when they came up with the idea to surprise the hard working woman with the special trip.

The students started a Go Fund Me page and asked their classmates to contribute whatever they could. In no time, they raised $6,860.

When they presented Thompson with the money, she broke down in tears.

“Are you serious?” Thompson said tearfully. “Thank you.”

The students say they were more than happy to help Thompson’s dream come true.

“Just goes to show what amazing things can be done when total strangers, classmates, and customers come together to make a dream come true,” they said.

Now, she works at Acorn Coffee Shop at Elon University. She works until 2 a.m. every night. Her managers told the Elon Pendulum that she has always been reliable and hardly ever calls out.

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