Ellen DeGeneres gives kind waitress $12,000

Ellen DeGeneres gives kind waitress $12,000
SURPRISE: Talk show host Ellen DeGeneres (far right) presenting a cheque to Miss Sarah Hoidahl (right) for US$10,000.

A waitress picked up the US$27.75 (S$35) lunch tab of two National Guard soldiers affected by the US government's shutdown - and found herself more than US$10,000 (S$12,000) richer, all thanks to talk show host Ellen DeGeneres.

Miss Sarah Hoidahl, a waitress in New Hampshire, in north-eastern US, overheard two soldiers talking about not getting paid, reported Fox News. After the meal, instead of giving them the bill, she sent them a note: "Thanks to the government shutdown, people like you who protect this country are not getting paid. However, I still am.

Lunch is on me. Thank you for serving ladies! Have a good day!"

Miss Hoidahl went home with US$8 after footing their bill.

But last Friday, DeGeneres caught wind of Miss Hoidahl's act of kindness when the New Hampshire National Guard posted a picture on its Facebook page.

During her show, DeGeneres fished US$27.75 in cash out of a ridiculously large purse at first.

Then she gave Miss Hoidahl a 50-inch TV set because she heard that her TV was broken. She saved the writing of the US$10,000 cheque for last.

Miss Hoidahl buried her face in her hands and thanked DeGeneres as the talk show host repeated: "You're a good person."

The 21-year-old single mother was waiting tables when two National Guard members sat in her section for lunch, reported FoxCarolina.com.

Miss Hoidahl, who reportedly has friends in the military and is dating a Marine, heard the women discussing the furlough and that they weren't getting paid.

"It just got me thinking, 'Geez, that's really difficult'," Miss Hoidahl, who lives with her mother and 15-month-old son, Ashton, told DeGeneres.

"I'm a waitress and a single mother. I know how it is."

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