Suffering through the tragic aftermath of Hurricane Harvey, an elderly couple was pleasantly surprised last week when they ordered chicken burritos from Chick-fil-A and – halfway jokingly … a rescue boat – only to find the Christian fast food chain making good on both the main course and the “side order.”
Houston residents J.C. and Karen Spencer were trapped in their Houston, Texas, home last Monday when the faithful longtime Chick-fil-A customer decided to place a phone order of two chicken burritos – along with a side order of help – for himself and his wife.
"I ordered two grilled chicken burritos with extra egg and a boat," Spencer told Good Morning America in an interview, according to Breitbart. "And can you believe that one of the managers of Chick-fil-A, she sent her husband to pick us up? And we are so grateful."
Of Sabbath Sundays and rescue Mondays
Respected in the Christian community as the famous – and faithful – Christian chicken sandwich restaurant that refuses to put profits before honoring God on the Sabbath by remaining closed on Sundays, Chick-fil-A delivered another faith-inspiring message by rescuing loyal customers.
The home delivery took place when the faithful fast food giant responded to the Spencer’s order by sending them – along with their burritos – two jet skis to bring them to safety … as well as a boat to transport their salvaged belongings.
“Spencer and Karen were known to order breakfast from their local Chick-fil-A on a regular basis, and although the restaurant was closed on Monday – due to the deadly rising floodwaters – someone happened to be at the right place at the right time,” the Christian Post (CP) reported.
The elderly couple’s order appeared to be providential.
“Chick-fil-A Manager Jeffrey Urban said he was just stopping by the restaurant on Monday to check on things,” CP’s Jeannie Law retold. “While there, he noticed the phone was ringing continuously he checked the phone and found it was the Spencers.”
In a last-ditch attempt to satisfy their taste buds, quench their hunger and escape the wrath of Harvey, the order was placed with a not-too-joking sense of desperation.
“According to the store manager, Spencer wittingly placed his regular order and then requested help, explaining that the floodwaters in his home were now at a dangerous level and 911 was not responding to his calls,” Law explained.
In fact, pretty much every other resource was exhausted when calling for help.
"He was saying he was trying to reach out to people, and he couldn't get any response from 911," Urban shared with HLD on Thursday, according to CNN. "So he called Chick-fil-A to see if we could help him out. And it was such a blessing that – in that exact moment – I was there to answer the phone and get him help."
A pleasant surprise soon ensued – as well as a real-life example of testimony showing how Chick-fil-A serves its customers with a heart to serve God and bless its clientele.
“Once off the phone, Urban called the store owner and HR director, who had a boat, to coordinate a rescue effort for the elderly couple,” Law recounted. “The photos of Spencer and Karen sitting on jet skis have now gone viral as the story circulates the web.”
Going way above the call of duty, Urban orchestrated an epic Chick-fil-A delivery that will go down in history, as detailed below.
“Urban got the couple's address and called up the restaurant owner and HR director Cindy Smith to see what could be done,” CNN’s AJ Willingham recalled. “Smith's husband had a boat. So he and a few neighbors headed out to the Spencers' house with a boat and a jet ski in tow. It is a deeply unenviable situation, to have to be rescued from a house, a neighborhood, a city underwater.“
The Chick-fil-A customer vividly remembers the once-in-a-lifetime experience.
“So the jet ski went around the back, and I broke those doors open so they came on through here,” Spencer retold while standing in his ruined living room, according to USA Today – just moments before he snapped the photo that went viral showing his wife sitting on the jet ski by their front door. “She said, 'I never dreamed I’d be leaving my house by boat.'”
A fast food testimony that tickles more than the tastebuds
The rescue will forever provide a ray of light for the Spencers when they look back on the devastating Harvey-induced flood that claimed many of their most prized and memorable keepsakes.
“They loaded their belongings into the larger craft, and rode out on the jet skis,” KHOU-TV’s Michael Crowe reported, according to USA Today. “Together, they made it to dry land. He’s thankful for the help of strangers – a gesture that makes it easier to tolerate digging through the ruined family mementos in the house.”
Chicken burritos and Chick-fil-A’s famous chicken sandwiches and waffle fries will most likely be a staple for the Spencer’s diet for many years to come.
“I’m sure we’ve become fast friends for life,” Spencer told the local station. “I know people would do it for us. It’s the right thing to do. This disaster shows that people do care about each other.”
Needless to say, the Spencers’ loyalty to the fast food giant has only increased since then.
“Urban revealed that Spencer called Chick-fil-A again, just two days after the dramatic rescue,” Law informed. “This time, he really did just want his breakfast burrito.”