WHITE CENTER, Wash. – A Kent mom found a way to make an instance of racism a teachable and inspiring moment for her daughter.

Danee Masarang took her 8-year-old daughter Autumn to the White Center KFC Wednesday. There they heard of a customer singling out one of the restaurant’s cooks.

“He said, ‘I don’t want any black man touching my food, so you have to re-cook it,’” said Autumn.

Danee said she saw the worker was upset.

“It just needs to be heard that this is just not tolerable,” she said. “Somebody was hurting, so what could I do to help that person?”

She posted about the experience on Facebook. One of her friends, Jana, is an art teacher at a nearby Christian school. Jana had the idea to have her students make cards for the worker. They delivered the cards Friday, along with a drawing Jana recently did of Martin Luther King, Jr.

“Mine says ‘God loves you’ and ‘I’m sorry that happened,’” said Jana’s daughter Serena as she showed off her card.

Serena said she’d only seen racism in history books so far in her short life.

“Like Rosa Parks, she had to be on the back of the bus,” she explained. “That was a long time ago and people still do that. That’s really silly.”

KFC didn’t approve our last-minute request to go inside the store as the group gave their gifts to the worker, but at a distance, it was clear the gesture meant a lot to him. He wiped tears from his eyes.

“It was really great,” said Autumn as she returned to her family’s car.