Yes, you read that correctly. Free chicken dinner.
That’s what family restaurant owners from the Philadelphia area are offering Federal government workers affected by the government shutdown. The Abruzzese family, owners of the Pineville Tavern in Bucks County, PA and Pineville Fishtown in Philadelphia, PA, are doing their part by helping out families in need.
As Drew Abruzzese, who owns the restaurants with his father, Andrew Abruzzese told PhillyVoice:
“When we saw the news that federal employees wouldn’t be receiving their paychecks today, we decided that we had to take action to help the local park rangers, postal employees, TSA officers and other U.S. government personnel who need help making ends meet during this crisis.”
And they sure did “take action.” Plenty of people took the Abruzzese’s up on their offer.
Why a chicken dinner? Apparently, Drew thinks the pickle-brined fried chicken is “the ultimate comfort food.”
Honestly, I see what he means. Who doesn’t love a good chicken dinner? Plus, I can personally vouch for Pineville Tavern having awesome food. My wife and I went there a few times when we lived in the Philly area.
However, this story gets better. One couple who dined at the Pineville Tavern took a different approach. Instead of getting the free chicken dinner (the husband is a Federal employee), they wanted to pay homage to the Abruzzese’s generosity.
As restaurant staff shared on the Pineville Tavern Facebook page, “He explained that he wanted to offer his business to us, and that was more important to him than taking advantage of the offer. Truly first class.“
“Whether someone decides to take us up on that offer or to echo the sentiment of the fine couple that was in for lunch today, we can all agree that amidst such a polarized political climate, there is nothing like good food, good friends and good service to bring people together.”
Yes, bringing people together. That’s what heroes do, isn’t it?
But, as Andrew Abruzzese told me in a Facebook message, “The hero’s are those who serve our country.”
I couldn’t agree more.
Hats off to the Abruzzese family, those that serve our great country and their families, and anyone else out there helping people when it matters most.
Amanda Riggan, a full-time driver with FedEx and founder of “Hungry Heroes,” a non-profit that feeds first responders and veterans, was making her regular rounds last Thursday when she met a woman who tearfully shared with her that her husband had cancer.
“I pray every day for the Lord to use me,” Riggan said through tears. “When you feel those tugs on your heartstrings, and you feel like you need to do this, stop and do it.”
Georges Loinger used all his skill and cunning – and a large dash of chutzpah – to rescue Jewish children from deportation and near-certain death during the second world war.
… Loinger personally saved at least 350 children, for which he was awarded the Resistance Medal, the Military Cross and the Legion of Honour.
“Kazin, age 9, remained calm, dialed 911 and was able to describe his grandfather’s symptoms and provide other valuable information that assisted first responders in providing necessary medical treatment,” the department said.
“The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.”
– Martin Luther King, Jr.
Anyone of us can be a hero.
I know it may sound cliche, but it’s true.
It doesn’t have to be giving people a free dinner (but it could be) or saving hundreds of children. It could just be holding the door for someone or putting your phone away to pay attention to your spouse or kids.
To me, being heroic is a part of who you are every day. It’s not a one-time thing or one moment.
The folks we highlighted today are no different than you. Take a cue from them and be a hero to someone in your life.
I’ll catch you next Friday. Have an awesome weekend.
PS: Can you do me a quick favor? Forward this email to one person and encourage them to sign up for the Hero Story newsletter. Thank you.