When we come across a touching story, we get especially excited to share it with our readers. Life has gotten quite hectic and very confusing lately and it often seems like people have lost their compassion — their ability to feel empathy for anyone.
But, there is good out there and in these challenging times, we just have to look a little harder to find it.
This is a story about a man in a Denny’s restaurant and what he did to garner national attention. It’s a heartwarming and heartbreaking story which has now gone viral.
It’s a tale about a man, wishing only to be identified as “Briggs,” who went into Denny’s in Utah and asked that the hostess seat him in a section served by a single mother. Thinking it an odd request, the hostess nonetheless obliged. Knowing her co-worker Crystal to be a single mom, she sat Briggs at Crystal’s booth.
For the next two hours, Briggs sat there and didn’t order much for himself. The staff obviously wondered why. ‘Briggs’ may not have ordered much for himself, but what he did do during those two hours, is pay the tabs for many of the families eating in the restaurant. When the hostess asked Briggs what sparked his giant act of kindness, he simply responded, “Family is everything. I’ve lost all mine.”
Incredibly, Briggs did much more than just pay the tabs for complete strangers — he also left his waitress, Crystal, the single mom, a $1,500 tip. What ‘Briggs” didn’t know at the time, was that his generosity allowed Crystal and her son to move out of a homeless shelter.
Dateline NBC was able to locate and interview Briggs and he told them that initial reports of him paying $1,000 to cover some of the families’ meals are exaggerated, saying he really paid about $600 for everyone in the restaurant. The report about Crystal he says, is true.
And the reason he wanted to help a single mother specifically?
“I grew up with a single mother of six. We were poor and homeless a lot,” Briggs told Dateline. “I watched and suffered for years as I watched her work her hands to the bone to give us a good life. She raised us to be kind and help others. Many years down the road, I was facing prison and getting in trouble. It ended up causing me to lose my family because I was a really terrible person.”
Briggs says he eventually turned his life around. He has opened his own business and become a success.
“Now I’ve been helping others as I was raised to do,” he says. “Now it’s time to pay it back.”
“I’ve done this many times, but this is the one that got out,” the man, who asked only to be identified as Briggs, told Dateline.
His act of kindness and generosity caught the attention of thousands when it was posted on Facebook and Instagram.
The hostess later posted this on Facebook:
“Today I met an angel. You came into a Denny’s I work at in Utah. You asked me, ‘Can I have a waitress who is a single mother?’ I thought it was very odd, but I sat you in Crystal’s section. You sat there for 2 hours just watching people. 7 families came in and ate while you were there and you paid every one of their bills, over $1,000 you paid for people you didn’t even know. I asked, ‘Why did you do that?’ You simply said, ‘Family is everything, I’ve lost all mine.’ Looking into your eyes while you said that made me tear up (It’s why I walked away so quickly) as soon as I got in the back I broke down in tears because your eyes had so much pain in them.
I just wanted to let you know, the waitress Crystal that you requested was living in a shelter with her son until she was able to save up enough to get a place. Your bill was $21.34 and you left her a $1,500 tip, because of you she gets her new place next week, because of you 7 families ate for free. Crystal told me she prayed the night before for a miracle and God sent you. You left before any of us could say thank you, I hope you read this because you’re truly an amazing person and you stole the hearts of every one of us here. Thank you.”
This is what we call a ‘random act of kindness’ — someone doing a good thing for a person/people who aren’t expecting it, and they do so without personal gain.
We said at the start of this story that it was both a heartwarming and a heartbreaking story — it’s heartbreaking because Briggs has obviously had some difficulties in his life and that is precisely why it’s all the more heartwarming. ‘Briggs’ radiates positivitiy — whatever hardships he may have had, he chose to give back to the world by doing a great kindness for complete strangers. Beautiful!
Please do share this story. We have enough bad news in the world and any good news needs to be paid forward, so pass it on. Let us take a moment to give a cosmic ‘thank you’ to Briggs for his wonderful acts of kindness and think good thoughts for the waitress Crystal, hoping that she has bright days ahead of her!