Kids really love the garbage man. I don’t know if it’s the massive truck that they’re enamored with, or if kids, who somehow find unusual joy in getting dirty, just feel like they’ve found their people when they see the garbage man.
Whatever the case, the bond between the people who collect our trash and our children who create it has a way of warming our hearts and going viral.
Four-year-old Rosie Evenson and her two sisters live for Thursday morning trash pickup. It’s been a standing date between the girls and their garbagemen for years. The girls’ mom, Angie, says that every week the kids would “stop what they were doing and rush to the window to wave to the garbage men.”
Brandon Olsen and Taylor Fritz are the guys on the truck in the Evenson’s Blue Earth, Minnesota, neighborhood. They look forward to their weekly greeting as much as the kids look forward to giving it. “The guys would always go way out of their way to wave big,” Angie explains. “You could tell they always made an intentional effort to look for the girls.”
Brandon and Taylor loved their bond with the girls in the window so much that last year they delivered Halloween candy as a token of their friendship, and gratitude for the waves.
In return, the girls all drew and decorated pictures for their garbagemen friends. And the next Thursday morning—like clockwork—the guys showed up to collect the trash. Angie gave them the drawings along with a short note.
Unlike the pictures from her girls, the note wasn’t a “thank you,” but instead some heartbreaking news.
Angie’s note told Brandon and Taylor that the girls may not be at the window every Thursday now because Rosie had been diagnosed with stage 4 kidney cancer.
“I wrote a little note saying, ‘Our little 3-year-old, Rosie, was diagnosed with cancer and has treatments on Thursdays, but keep looking for us even though sometimes we will be gone,’” said Angie. “I just wanted them to know we weren’t stopping waving at them.”
Brandon, who has three young kids of his own, said he was devastated to read the note. “This family forever changed my life—I read the note and was in near tears,” he said. “Being a father, it’s scary to think, ‘What if it were me in that situation?'”