A Chick-fil-A customer who remains anonymous was caught giving a needy man the shoes off his own feet when he noticed that the person’s shoes were falling apart and taped together with duct tape.
A 13-year-old girl whose family dines weekly at the Christian-owned franchise – rated America’s best fast food chain – snapped a photo of the incident and reported it to a local television station in Bowling Green, Kentucky.
"His shoes were being held together with duct tape," Hallie Cassady told WBKO-TV, recounting the first time she noticed the needy man at the Chick-fil-A in Bowling Green.
It was reported that the generous customer was not about to let the poor man continue in his ramshackle condition at Christmastime.
“The needy gentleman had walked into the Chick-fil-A in Bowling Green in a pair of beat-up shoes …” Fox News reported. “Noticing this — and seeing that the man was about to go back out into the cold — an anonymous customer stopped the man in his tracks and offered up his own footwear.”
Cassady recalled how the Chick-fil-A patron made eye contact with the man in need and let his actions speak louder than words.
"He was about to go back out the door, and the guy just looked at him in the eyes, and he took off his boots and handed them to him," the girl explained about his encounter with the good Samaritan. "You could tell it made the other guy's day – and it made my day."
She also recalled the simple dialogue that went on between the two.
“The guy goes, ‘Sir?’ and he goes ‘Yes?,’” she recalled before the newer and warmer pair of shoes transferred ownership.
Kindness going viral
The early teen was not too young to appreciate the gravity of the act of selflessness and wanted to share the prized moment with more than just her own family, and it soon traveled around the “twitter-sphere” in a way that she never imagined.
"So, I grabbed his [her father's] phone and immediately took a picture of the man,” Cassady shared with the station. “I told dad, 'We gotta share this.’ This is an amazing story to let people know, and it's sorta going a little viral here in Bowling Green."
Within no time after the girl’s father, Kyle, posted the encounter on Twitter and Facebook, it received 200 retweets … and the number has been steadily rising ever since. According to TheBlaze, by Friday morning, the post received more than 1,000 likes.
"As a parent, you always want good examples and role models for your kids," Kyle Cassady shared with WBKO.
Here is what he tweeted:
“Just witnessed an awesome act of kindness by this gentleman taking off his boots during his meal at the (BG) Chick-fil-A to give to a man in need with shoes that were being held together with duct tape,” Kyle Cassady’s Dec. 11 post read.
The hospitable customer made no pretense of his act of kindness and continued about his dining experience.
“Hallie said the man continued to eat his meal with his socks on, walking out into the cold barefoot,” WBKO’s Kelly Dean reported.
Hallie was grateful to witness the kind deed in person, which made it different than just reading about such acts of charity online or in a book.
"There really is still good people in this world – if we just look for it,” she shared with the station. “It was just so kind of the man to do it."
A Christmas atmosphere of charity
Her father described the incident as a weekly family dinner tradition at a true Christian establishment highlighted with a lesson from a stranger.
"The irony behind all this is the values and beliefs of the Chick-fil-A corporation, and this act of kindness taking place here in this store in Bowling Green, Kentucky.” Kyle Cassady expressed to WBKO. “She got to see something that you don't see every day."
Hallie Cassady hopes that her dad’s social media posts will spur similar acts of kindness in her community and around the world.
“Just as Hallie was inspired, she's hoping that getting the word out about this story will inspire us of all – not only during the Christmas season, but year-round,” Dean informed.
It was fitting that the charitable act took place in a Chick-fil-A because it regularly provides needy people around its various locations with free meals.
“Chick-fil-A says they usually do what they can to help out those in need,” Dean noted. “They often will give free meals to the less fortunate in our area at no cost.”