Twin Falls Times-News reporter Melissa Davlin reports that a “quiet wave of kindness” is sweeping through Idaho’s Capitol. The reason: Senate President Pro Tem Brent Hill, R-Rexburg, is asking friends and colleagues to do 37 small acts of kindness in memory of his son, Ritchie Hill. Ritchie, who had just turned 28 when he died in 2004, would have turned 37 on Jan. 27 this year. Hill told the Times-News that his family has commemorated his birthday each year, often with acts of service. “Ritchie was known for helping others and loved reaching out to those in need,” Hill wrote in a Facebook post. “It would be a great way to celebrate a life worth celebrating.”
Ritchie Hill was a nonsmoker who succumbed to lung cancer. His illness helped prompt his father to propose 2004’s successful legislation to ban smoking in many Idaho public places, including restaurants, to protect Idahoans from the dangers of second-hand smoke. You can read Davlin’s full report here. She reports that people replied to Hill’s online request with service ideas of their own. One person donated coats, and another shoveled a neighbor’s driveway; numerous legislators commented on or “liked” the post.