Whitestown FD rewards local 3-year-old for his generosity

Carter wanted to give donuts to Whitestown police and firefighters as a 'thank you' on his birthday (WTHR photo)

A life lesson turned into the lesson of a lifetime Friday morning as a 3-year-old boy was rewarded for his generosity.

The Whitestown Fire Department Ladder Truck had an interesting run, siren and all. It certainly resonated with 3-year-old Carter Crouch, who ran to the door to see what was going on.

"Fire truck. Fire truck," Carter cried out as he looked out the front door of his Whitestown home. When his mom asked if he wanted to go outside and see it, he hesitantly did. Much to his surprise, they weren't going to put out a fire - but to wish the 3-year-old a happy birthday.

Last year on his birthday, Carter raised money to help feed dogs at the local animal shelter. This year, he wanted to do something for the local police.

"Obviously, it's an exciting day being that it's his third birthday. We are very excited to give back to the fire department and police department," said Carter's father, Jacob.

It may have been a day designed to show appreciation for someone else, but as is usually the case, when you do good for someone else, it eventually comes back around to you. So when Carter wanted to deliver doughnuts to first responders, Whitestown FD was happy to offer him a ride.

"The firefighters and the policemen keep us safe," Jacob said as he held his son on his lap in the back of the firetruck.

"And the ambulance," Carter corrected him.

"And the ambulance, yes," Dad replied laughingly.

"I really hope he continues through his adulthood," Devin said. "The takeaway would be it is better to do something for others."

"It's easy to get wrapped up in a birthday and receiving presents," added Jacob. "This is a way to show him that maybe your birthday is a good time to give back to others."

Carter received his own fire helmet and a special welcome from Buck the arson dog, but then he got his real reward: to sit in the firetruck.

Carter's parents aren't sure how they're going to top this experience next year. At least they have another year to think about it.