NEW YORK (WABC/KayBrownPhotos/CNN) - A chance meeting on a New York subway sparked a movement.
One woman saw an opportunity to help a stranger and did something none of the other riders had done. Her small act of kindness caused a ripple effect.
On a crowded 3 train in Times Square during peak rush hour, Kay Brown took notice of a perfect stranger, a homeless woman whose weary journey one could only imagine.
"She just had like a tiny little raggedy shirt and like a jacket and her feet, I mean bare feet, not socks, not raggedy shoes, but completely bare feet," Brown said Friday.
Quietly and discreetly, Brown says, she approached the woman and offered the shoes off her own feet, which happened to be a perfect match.
"She asked me, 'Are you sure?' And I go, 'Yes of course, oh my gosh,' and so she started putting them on and started crying and I know it was amazing and she just put them on and left," Brown said.
It was a brief and touching exchange that left a lasting impression on Kay, who planned to walk home in socks, before another man who witnessed everything, offered her an extra pair to go over her own.
"Wouldn't you want somebody to show some compassion towards you and not walk by you or scoff like, what if you were the person in need," Brown said.
Overwhelmed and inspired by the ripple effects of her small gesture, Brown shared the experience with friends and family on Facebook.
It's a post that's since gone viral, promoting people around the world to pay it forward.
"Right now there's so many terrible things happening, I mean absolutely terrible things happening," Brown says. "So I wasn't trying to do that to pat my own back … . And I can't believe how something so small turned into something so great."
Kay says she figured she could buy another pair of shoes but it is mid-November and she wanted to help the shoeless woman suffer a little less.
She says she walked six blocks to get home and wants to give a big shout out to the guy who gave her the extra pair of socks because they helped a lot.