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Hospitalized teen goes viral with creative window sign requesting pizza

An 18-year-old who must routinely visit the hospital has been overwhelmed by the kindness of strangers.
Mike Moss/Twitter
/ Source: TODAY

Hospitals aren’t known for having the best food, so when a patient or employees are craving a special treat, they may have to get a little creative to score something tasty.

Cole Favro, an 18-year-old who has cystic fibrosis, who is regular a patient at Golisano Children’s Hospital in Rochester, New York, recently found a very inventive way to let the world know that he really wanted some pizza — and he was absolutely blown away by the response.

On Friday, Favro (who visits the hospital every two weeks to receive treatment) penned a note in large block lettering on his hospital room window: “SEND PIZZA 8 SOUTH RM 14.”

Within an hour of drawing the message, the first pizza arrived. By Saturday, Favro had received nearly a dozen pizzas. And if you're thinking that seems like a lot of pizza for one person ... you would be right.

However, the sweetest part of this savory ask was that Favro didn't just request the pies for himself — he is about to be transferred to a different hospital, having almost aged out of the children’s ward when after turning 18 in December. Any donated pizzas were meant to be a big thank you gift for the nurses and hospital staff who have helped care for him every two weeks for many, many years.

According to Mike Moss, a photographer for Spectrum News, two large sheets of pizza arrived on Friday, followed by three more sheets and 10 large pies the next day.

"I just wanted to do something nice and fun for all of the nurses and staff to thank them for all of the amazing support they’ve given me," Favro told TODAY Food via email. "Ever since I was born with cystic fibrosis I’ve been in and out of the hospital about three times a year, for two weeks at a time."

Favro said that he wanted his last visit at this hospital to be special. "Everybody here is like family and this has become my second home so leaving is a bittersweet moment."

By early this week, Favro and his supportive nursing staff had received 18 pizzas, a box of cannolis and over 100 chicken wings. "I never expected that kind of response and it was just absolutely amazing seeing the support from the community for all the kids in the hospital like me," said Favro.

The hospital staffers were also blown away, not only by their patient's effort, but by the many gestures of kindness from total strangers.

“It is so heartwarming to see this kind of compassion and generosity from our community," senior nurse manager Denise Clough told TODAY. "Cole’s request for pizza did so much more for all of us here at Golisano Children’s Hospital. He wanted to make sure every floor [at the hospital] got pizzas so all the children and staff could enjoy them. It brought us together in a unique way.”

Pizza has inspired great acts of kindness before. Last year, a teenaged pizza delivery guy traveled over 200 miles to deliver pizza to a terminally ill man who simply wanted a slice from his favorite restaurant.