A restaurant server named Danielle Franzoni got the surprise of a lifetime when she closed out 2019 during a shift at work. A couple had left her a $2,020 tip.
What made the shocking tip even more shocking was that it was left on a bill of just $23.33 at Thunder Bay River Restaurant in Alpena, in Northeast Michigan. Along with the massive tip, there was a handwritten note on the receipt that simply read, “Happy New Year. 2020 Tip Challenge.”
Absolutely flabbergasted by what she was seeing, Danielle thought that the tip was a joke at first. The single mother and recovering addict was homeless just one year ago, never dreaming something like this would ever happen to her.
Danielle’s manager reassured her that the generous tip was, in fact, very real.
“I don’t even have the exact words,” Danielle said. “I feel like I want to say everything from my heart, but this couple has no idea what they have done for my family.”
So, what does this grateful server plan to do with the money? Her plans are to use it to help reinstate her driver’s license which she says is “huge” for her. She also plans on redesigning her daughter’s bedrooms, then putting the rest of the money in savings. Danielle says that although she has spoken to the couple that left her the tip before, they had no idea about her story or her past struggles.
“They don’t know anything of me — I’ve never had but just small-talk conversation with them,” Danielle explained. “And they’ve changed my life, completely.”
What made the event so special to Danielle was the fact that she thought things like this don’t happen to people like her.
“From where I used to be and the choices I made in life, this doesn’t happen to someone like me,” she said.
“It’s the message. It’s the faith that this couple and this family has put back into my family,” she continued. “I’m a waitress. I don’t make great money. It would take me months to save up $2,000.”
The small town of Alpena is located off Lake Huron and has a population of around 10,000 people. This amazing act of kindness will hopefully spur more kindness in the small town. In fact, Danielle made sure to leave a tip of $20.20 for her server that night at dinner.
“That was my pay it forward,” she said. “I couldn’t do the other one.”
Danielle dreams of someday opening a women and children’s sobriety house and continue paying it forward.
The holidays are often known for generous tips such as these and Danielle wasn’t the only lucky one in 2019.
According to NBC affiliate WMTV, donors from the Boys and Girls Club of Dane County gave a $4,000 tip to two servers to split just before Christmas. Surely making their Christmas a bright one! Then, at a Cracker Barrel in Dublin, Georgia, a group asked to be sat with the best server at the restaurant. Before leaving, they left a $1,200 tip for Janet Ballard who said that she was completely “overwhelmed” by the generosity. The gesture moved her to tears as she spoke.
Want to learn more about Danielle and her story? Watch the full video below. You’ll be inspired to pay-it-forward too!
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Source: Good News Network