Roses have the power to make people feel good, Dave Kearsey discovers

Published on February 12, 2017

A big smile came across her face. Her eyes welled up. She hopped up from her desk to give me a big hug.

Tears began to form after she had declared, “You’re going to make me cry.”

One single red rose presented to a woman at work by a total stranger, yours truly, appeared to take the sting away from a past memory.

She had reflected back to the Valentine’s Day one year ago which, for personal reasons, wasn’t so happy for her.

Being a fan of hugs, I asked for another and she gladly obliged.

Her colleagues at work were just as happy. They wanted a picture of the two of us with the red rose to send to head office.

Before I left to approach the next stranger with one of the dozen or so roses I had to randomly give away as part of The Western Star’s Valentine’s Day feature, I saw her put the rose in a bottle.

It was at this point that I realized the power of a rose — a symbol of love and beauty.

Sports editor Dave Kearsey hams it up for the camera with a rose, one of a dozen or so he gave away to strangers as part of a Western Star Valentine's feature.
Diane Crocker/TC Media

It was a small gesture, but the impact was huge, not only on the ones who smiled when they received a rose, but for me personally.

For that brief period of time, I had forgotten all about the struggles and challenges I face in my own life and thought about this woman and how she was feeling.

She told me I had made her day, and that made me feel like a million bucks.

All I had to do was hand out a rose to make somebody’s day a little more bearable.

Before I went out to shoot the feature with colleague Diane Crocker, I really didn’t think there would be much of a response.

I mean it’s only a rose, right?

That wasn’t the case for those who received them.

Another woman, moments after picking up some groceries, had a confused look on her face when I approached her.

I didn’t know if she was going to smack me in the mouth or walk on by. I mean, you really never know what somebody is going to do or say when you approach a stranger out of the blue.

But then a big smile formed on her face and she told me the timing was great, since it was her birthday.

“You just made my day,” was the most common response from the women with the new roses.

Making somebody else’s day better with a small token of love and hope was what I aimed to accomplish.

Little did I know that being able to impact people with a single red rose made me feel better than when I got out of bed to go to work.

One single rose.

One simple act of kindness.

All involved went home with smiles.


Dave Kearsey is the sports editor of the Western Star. Ask his co-workers and they’ll also tell you he leads the office in charm.