A bakery truck driver shares bread with hundreds of other drivers stuck in the massive traffic jam on I-95 earlier this week. Casey Holihan and her husband John Noe were headed from their home in Maryland to see family in North Carolina after the holidays when they got stranded on I-95 near Quantico, Virginia. The couple had been on the highway for around 16 hours and were a couple of cars behind a Schmidt Baking Company truck when they had an idea.
“We were starving,” says Holihan. “People around us were very much struggling as well. We could hear kids crying.” They called up Schmidt Baking Company hoping that they’d be willing to share some of the product from their truck with the stranded drivers. They left their number with a representative at the company’s customer service department, but they didn’t hold out much hope of getting a response. But just 20 minutes later they got a call back fromChuck Paterakis, one of the owners of Schmidt Baking Company. He told them to go to the truck and that he’d instructed the driver to give two items from the truck to anyone who wanted them.
So Holihan, Noe, and the truck driver,Ron Hill, started grabbing loaves of bread off the truck and delivering them to the stranded drivers. “We started going door to door and we got to help a lot of people,” recalls Holihan. They ended up giving out around 300 packages of bread. Holihan says Paterakis’s kind gesture was the best part of an otherwise bad experience. “He didn’t have to help us. He could have made a profit off that bread,” she says. “It was really heartwarming.” But Paterakis says, “It was an easy decision.” He says if he’d been stuck out there without any food, “I would want someone to offer their products.”
Photo Credit: Getty