TORONTO — Guilt can make you do a lot of things, including the right thing.
An adorable girl named Karina has won the praise of environmentalists everywhere for returning a rock she took from the Great Smoky Mountains National Park.
Rangers from the park posted a letter written by Karina on Facebook in which she apologized for taking home the souvenir from Tom Brand Falls.
“Deep Creek was awesome! I especially liked Tom Branch Falls,” she wrote. “I loved it so much I wanted to have a souvenir to come home with me, so I took a rock. I’m sorry and I want to return it.”
Karina also included a donation and a drawing of Tom Branch Falls in her letter.
Park rangers were so impressed by Karina’s goodwill that they posted a reply to thank her for being “an amazing steward for the park.”
They added: “If every visitor took a rock home, that would mean 11 million rocks would be gone from the park every year! The park would definitely not be as beautiful as it was before. Rocks in the Smokies also provide homes for hundreds of creatures, including salamanders! By leaving rocks where they are, we’re helping protect these special homes as well as the beauty of the park.”
Not only is it bad for the environment to remove items from national parks, it’s also a federal crime. Yikes! So Karina definitely did the right thing by returning her stolen souvenir.
Let’s hope Karina inspires more people to help conserve the environment. Thank you, Karina!