Cookies for the front lines: Goodnight provides good day for health workers

Makenna Goodnight presents cookies to Genesis Silver Lake Center Unit Assistant Tyrone Leake early Friday afternoon in Dover. (Delaware State News/Marc Clery)

DOVER — The delivery and exchange lasted just a few moments, and the cookies were quickly transported to their intended targets.

When 21-year-old Makenna Goodnight couldn’t send treats to military troops overseas this year due to the pandemic, she brought them to nearby heroes.

The University of Delaware junior baked enough cookies for 120 nurses, then distributed them to a pair of medical facilities Friday.

“They’ve been through the whole COVID response, and I figured they could use a little happiness right now,” Ms. Goodnight said.

“The nurses have been standing on the front lines giving to others all day being around the COVID. They’ve definitely stepped up trying to save everybody.”

First, Ms. Goodnight arrived at Bayhealth Hospital, Sussex Campus, in Milford, then she traveled north to Dover to the Genesis Silver Lake Center.

Genesis Unit Assistant Tyrone Leake emerged from the Silver Lake Center to accept the cookies, which included chocolate, chocolate chip, peanut butter and sugar varieties, with some pretzel candies mixed in.

“For us, it means a lot,” Mr. Leake said. “It reminds us that people realize what we’re doing and why it matters so much.”

The trips came on the heels of the final UD examination of the semester Friday morning. Ms. Goodnight is studying athletic training with the aim of becoming a physical therapist.

For the previous six years or so, Ms. Goodnight took part in Operation Cookie Drop Off for troops. Her grandmother, Linda Goodnight, who served as Silver Lake’s treatment director of social services for 19 years, was hardly surprised that Makenna still found a way to show her gratitude to a different set of deserving recipients. She’s also been part of backpack giveaways for school-age children in the past.

“I couldn’t be more proud of her and the kindness in her heart. She’s always thinking of and caring for other people,” Linda Goodnight said.