Ask Andy Killen what his current goals are and you’ll get an answer that does not include fortune or fame.
“I try one day at a time to make the world a better place with random acts of kindness,” Killen said.
Throughout February, that meant supporting the “Days of Sweetness” campaign at Chick-fil-A, which gave a portion of cookie proceeds to Johns Hopkins Children’s Center.
“Everyone who works with the patients are truly amazing, kind and compassionate human beings,” said Killen, who wants to volunteer with Johns Hopkins once he has his own car.
For years, making the world a better place has come in the form of other activities. After graduating from Severna Park High School, he attended Anne Arundel Community College and participated in Relay For Life to raise money for the American Cancer Society.
“I’m very social,” Killen said. “When I was at Anne Arundel Community College, I reached out and just wanted to help. That is how I first found out about Relay For Life. Everyone has been affected by cancer in some way.”
He also wanted to help the athletes at Special Olympics Maryland. Since 2007, he has done the Maryland State Police Polar Bear Plunge to raise money for those athletes. While he has represented many teams over the years, he’s excited this year to represent Chick-fil-A, which has been his employer for six months.
“Everyone here is truly family,” Killen said. “Of all the places I’ve worked, not every place has good people, but we have a good crew here.”
One member of that crew, Killen’s coworker Cheryl Baal, called him a big addition to the Chick-fil-A team.
“He is kind and compassionate,” Baal said. “He takes his time with people and asks them if there is anything they need.”
Killen is unafraid to ask his community for support if he thinks it will help people. For the Polar Bear Plunge, he has asked his Chartridge neighbors for assistance. One year, he raised $4,000.
“I went door to door and some people helped,” he said. “Just to see people give back was amazing.”
Killen has seen the generosity of people with several other causes he has supported including Hospice of the Chesapeake camps and Lights on the Bay to benefit the SPCA of Anne Arundel County.
He credits his parents for showing him the importance of compassion.
“My dad is strong and tough,” he said. “My mom has a lot of psychology and social work in her background. My family is great, and they are all patient.”
In his free time, Killen enjoys singing songs that he posts to YouTube, and he is perfecting sound effects such as sirens and a Chewbacca growl. He hopes to use them at senior centers and hospitals to bring a smile to people’s faces. That hobby, he said, is just one more way he can reach people and fulfill his purpose of helping others.
“I think if you have a gift, you should use it to give back,” he said.
No comments on this item Please log in to comment by clicking here