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Long John Silver's worker donates her meal to indigent man

By BY J.R. ORTEGA - JRORTEGA@VICAD.COM
Jan. 25, 2013 at 8:02 p.m.
Updated Jan. 25, 2013 at 7:26 p.m.

16 x 9 good samaritan

A little help goes a long way - Jazmun Gonzales knows this well.

At least three times during the past few weeks the 19-year-old Long John Silver's employee has given her free meal of the day to an elderly man who she doesn't know.

A customer noticed the kind deed this week and brought it to the public's attention.

"I think it's admirable," said Viola Rodriguez, who was with her family at the restaurant Wednesday night and saw the good gesture occur.

"Today, it's someone else, but tomorrow it can be you," said Elias Rodriguez, her 13-year-old son who also saw the good deed.

Gonzales, of Victoria, doesn't know the man but has noticed him stop by without money.

"He would just ask for a cup," she said.

Employees at Long John Silver's get one free meal when they are working. Usually Gonzales does not eat hers, so she decided to share it with the stranger.

The time the Rodriguez family saw the deed happen, the man came in asking for peppermints. When Gonzales asked him to choose a meal instead, he mentioned he didn't have any money. That's when Gonzales said not to worry about it - she would take care of it.

"I'm just not a mean person," Gonzales said. "I'm going to help anybody I can."

Assistant Manager Alicia Flores, who has known Gonzales since May, said she's been a genuinely caring person.

"It's not uncommon for her to do a good deed," Flores said.

So what did the man order? A two fish and fries combo with hush puppies and a drink.

Flores has also given a free meal to customers.

They never really gave their kind deeds a second thought until the Rodriguez family pointed it out.

"We just don't think about it," Flores said. "We just try to help our customers."

Gonzales never expected to receive the attention of others based on her actions. She was just doing what she feels is the right thing, she said.

"Treat people the way you want to be treated," she said. "I wasn't trying to do it to get someone to notice me. I was just doing it out of the kindness of my heart."

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