Mayor mows for a good cause

Naugatuck Mayor Robert Mezzo mows the lawn of a resident Kerry McLaughin on Meadow Lark Drive in the borough Wednesday to help the resident raise money for charity. –RA ARCHIVE

Naugatuck Mayor Robert Mezzo mows the lawn of a resident Kerry McLaughin on Meadow Lark Drive in the borough Wednesday to help the resident raise money for charity. –RA ARCHIVE

NAUGATUCK — Now, that’s service!

That is what resident Kerry McLaughin thought when Mayor Robert Mezzo came over to mow her lawn on Meadow Lark Drive Tuesday afternoon.

The mowing isn’t part of the mayor’s new plan to garner votes: It’s his way of helping a resident give to charity.

McLaughin, a 20-year-old college student, is participating in a program called GISHWHES, an acronym for the Greatest International Scavenger Hunt the World Has Ever Seen. About 14,000 participants nationwide pay money to participate in the hunt, which asks teams of players to complete a long list of tasks, such as getting something they own on TV, making a human chain with a certain number of participants, and getting an elected official to work for less than minimum wage to spread awareness of the minimum wage.

That’s where Mezzo came in. McLaughlin asked Mezzo to cut the lawn for exactly zero dollars.

“I didn’t think he would participate, but he responded immediately saying he would like to get involved,” McLaughlin said.

Money raised from GISHWHES goes toward the nonprofit organization Random Acts, which aims to provoke random acts of kindness. The organization is dedicated to funding and inspiring acts of kindness around the world and has been heavily involved in helping Haiti rebuild from an earthquake in 2010, according to its website.

Mezzo, who used a push mower to cut about a quarter-acre of property Tuesday, doesn’t mind mowing lawns, especially for a good cause.

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