Positively WAVE: Popular cookie shop thankful for homeless veteran’s sweet gesture

Louisville man creates artwork on boards covering Kizito windows

LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - She’s a staple in Louisville’s society of sweet treats.

You may have had a Kizito cookie or seen them around town. And recently, a kind gesture on the outside of the store made the viral rounds on social media. The person behind the kind deed said he loves art and wanted to do something good.

Kizito Cookies, on Bardstown Road, was boarded up for weeks because the windows in the front of the store needed to be replaced. The building is very old. Folks thought Elizabeth Kizito, also known as the "cookie lady," closed up shop or something bad happened to her store.

“A lot of people didn’t know what to think; they thought (someone) threw a rock in my shop,” Kizito said Tuesday.

The windows being boarded up caused Kizito to lose business because customers though she closed.

Brian Tomes walked past Kizito Cookies recently and noticed the windows being covered up.

Elizabeth Kizito said she loves the people of Louisville after she found her shop decorated one morning.
Elizabeth Kizito said she loves the people of Louisville after she found her shop decorated one morning. (Source: Facebook)

“I’m a homeless veteran living in Kentucky,” Tomes said. “I’m 44 and when I was 17, I was told to get a job. I walked in and met Elizabeth Kizito and her partner Todd. They were gracious enough to give me a job at that age.”

Being a former employee, Tomes recognized the smell of the freshly-baked cookies. He knew Kizito’s wasn’t closed. Tomes has a passion for art, and decided to do a little work with chalk to let people know Kizito’s was in business.

“The open sign wasn’t big enough for me,” Tomes said. “So, I started open and arrows.”

Added Kizito: “He just wrote ‘Cookies, craft shop, we’re open.’”

At first, Kizito didn’t know who was behind the positive artwork, and she posted photos of it on Facebook, thanking the unknown person.

“A lot of people were saying, ‘Oh, is she reopening?’” Tomes said. “I said, ‘She never closed.’ She’s helped me and the community and so many people around that when I did what I did, I went in to show her and say, ‘Hey, did you like this?’ and immediately she said, ‘You did this?’”

“I loved it,” Kizito said. “I loved it.”

Kizito now has her new windows, but the feeling the art-covered ones gave her is irreplaceable.

“People in Louisville are so terrific,” Kizito said. “Made me (feel) really special. He loved me to do that.”

Tomes said he wants people to know how much Kizito impacted his life.

“Every time you see Elizabeth Kizito, you smile bigger than the moon,” Tomes said. “Probably one of the most genuine people you will find in Kentucky.”

Tomes has left his positive mark on other buildings and businesses in Louisville, messages of love and kindness. What’s also interesting is that Tomes lost his cellphone the day he did that art work at Kizito’s. An employee there found his phone three blocks away. He said it’s because he did a kind deed that someone returned the favor.

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