For over half a century now, Arby’s has been slicing up freshness, spreading joy to the world with their famous roast beef sandwiches. No one knows this better than World War II veteran, Mr. Doug. At 97-years-old, he is one of the restaurant chain’s most dedicated customers.
According to employees at the Arby’s in Chandler, Arizona, Doug comes in to eat literally every single day.
There is not a lot of variety in his diet either. He always orders exactly the same thing — a roast beef slider with Swiss cheese and a Coke, no ice.
One day, employee Travis Coye decided to ask him what he loves so much about Arby’s.
“Hey, Mr. Doug. We just want to know what keeps you coming back to this Arby’s location?” Coye asked.
It turns out, Doug has a stomach disorder which limits his options.
“This is the only place I can get a sandwich or get anything else to eat that doesn’t hurt my stomach,” Doug replied.
Doug is definitely not alone. It is a common occurrence that as we age, our ability to tolerate certain foods decreases, especially if the dish is spicy or greasy.
Once Doug found something he liked, there was no real reason to ever mix it up.
Every afternoon, he leaves his retirement home to head over, sits at the same table, and merrily greets the staff who have become like family to him.
“He comes in with a walker, as soon as we see him come to the doors, we try [to] grab the doors for him,” manager Christina Gamage said.
Gamage has been working at the Chandler location for 2.5 years now, and over time she has gotten to know Doug very well.
“He’s gone through a lot being a veteran, coming in, being in a retirement home, but he doesn’t have family,” she said.
After a while, the Arby’s staff basically adopted him as part of their crew. They even recently all chipped in out of their own pockets to buy the man $200 worth of gift cards to show him how much they cared.
They told Doug that today, lunch was on them, and at first, he thought they must be joking. However, after he realized they were serious, he was very thankful.
Doug’s response came straight from the heart.
“Thank you. I never know if I’ll be here the next day, but thank you so much for this,” he said.
Several members of staff even gave Doug their phone numbers, and told him if there was ever a day he couldn’t make it in, they would deliver his order to his retirement home for him.
We’re sure these generous employees and their act of kindness definitely made the man’s day… just knowing that there are still people out there who care about him has to be an amazing feeling for Doug.
After Fox News aired the story, there were so many positive responses from the community that Arby’s even decided to up the ante, offering Doug free food for life.
Now, for the rest of his years on this earth he will always have a place to go that feels like home, with great food he enjoys, and staff who treat him like family.
Check out the heart-warming Facebook post below from a customer who witnessed Doug receiving his gift card.
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