Foley EMT shares moment of surprise when Winn Dixie comped his groceries


FOLEY, Ala. (WKRG) — Michael Patrick, an EMT for MedStar, and his wife Diane have been particularly diligent about social distancing, worried about anything Michael may have been exposed to at work.

“It’s scary, because you never know,” he said.

So when the Patricks heard about Winn Dixie offering an extended shopping hour for first responders and health care workers, they decided to venture out – because they wouldn’t be around as many people.

“Walked in, spoke to the manager and assistant manager at the door and they acted a little bit strange in that they almost told us something, but then they decided not to,” Michael said.

That “something” was a one-night-only surprise for local heroes: a free set of groceries.

“When we finished up, he says ‘this is on us tonight,'” Michael said.

“They were surprised when they were going to check out, it was a last-minute thing and we were able to see their reaction it was really heartwarming,” said Tanner Vincent, the Foley location’s evening manager.

Michael said Diane broke into tears.

They both were so touched that they decided to pay it forward by using the money they would have spent on those groceries to buy Winn Dixie gift cards to donate to their church.

“It was given to us as a blessing. And we wanted to bless somebody else,” said Diane.

Winn Dixie will be holding the extended shopping hours for first responders and health care workers Mondays and Tuesdays from 8-9 p.m.


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