Trucker’s Small Act of Generosity on I-95 Inspires Huge Donation of Breakfasts to Feed Those in Need
Springdale, AR — A trucker’s small act of kindness along Interstate 95 in Virginia this week inspired a big act of generosity by popular breakfast maker Jimmy Dean Foods (JDF).
Jean-Carlo Gachet, 25, of Chester, VA, found himself in the midst of an icy nightmare on I-95 that left thousands of drivers stranded for over 24 hours.
In an interview with Transportation Nation Network (TNN), Gachet said he was traveling southbound, en route to make a delivery in Georgia, when he came upon the mess around 1 a.m. Tuesday morning.
Gachet, who started his career as a professional driver in September 2020 and is employed by North Chesterfield, VA-based Abilene Motor Express, said he found himself stranded near exit 161.
“I figured it was a good time for me to take my break,” Gachet stated, noting that truckers are “used to” waiting. “We’re either sitting down driving or sitting down parked, so I took my ten hour reset [right there on the interstate],” he told TNN.
As he waited, he became concerned about the needs of non-truckers along the 50+ mile stretch.
“I was thinking it’s about ten times worse (being stranded) in a car,” he explained. “They don’t have the water, food, or resources truckers do.”
That thought inspired him to Tweet a tip to his fellow stranded motorists.
Most truckers have water, food, heat and a bunk bed in their trucks. Feel free to reach out to them around you, if your situation is getting bad
— JC (@jcgachet96) January 4, 2022
With semi-trucks outnumbering cars in many areas, Gachet said one particular vehicle stuck out to him, as it was the “only car directly there.”
He had observed the driver exit the vehicle to walk his dog and stretch his legs, and Gachet resolved it was time to display the courage of his convictions.
He had a few Jimmy Dean breakfasts stashed away inside his rig, so he heated up a hearty bacon, egg and cheese bowl to deliver, along with a Minute Maid Hi-C beverage.
“When the (car) door opened, I said, ‘Hey, I made you a hot breakfast, I’m in that truck right behind you, you’ve been here without food and water, so this breakfast and drink is for you,'” he recalled.
The car’s driver — along with his mother, who was in the passenger seat — were both “shocked” and extremely thankful.
Having filmed the short interaction, Gachet also Tweeted the video… and the reaction was beyond anything he ever expected.
This car has been sitting near me since 1am (I-95 closure). Least I could do was offer them a microwaved breakfast pic.twitter.com/ItA3SKR7pc
— JC (@jcgachet96) January 4, 2022
Within hours, media outlets from across the world had picked up the video and were sharing Gachet’s kind gesture.
Social media was also abuzz about what Gachet had done.
A perfect picture of KINDNESS in action. I wish there were more people in the world like @jcgachet96.
— Nel Campbell (@ncamp93787) January 4, 2022
God sent for the ppl in car!! We need more of you in today’s world !! God bless you!! Thanks
— Govind Singh (@govindxsingh) January 4, 2022
you know? we all have our differences and some can be downright hateful, but in a crisis, there’s nothing like good ol human kindness and commiseration.
— 🌊🌊Pamelala🌊🌊 (@Fishchick63) January 4, 2022
I have been sitting here since 10 pm last night you got buffet back there bro. I got the time to walk back there for sure lol. Good looking out.
— tyler sandefur (@tylersandefur5) January 4, 2022
This truck driver is a wonderful human being! If we were all like him, what a wonderful world it would be! Many thanks to him!
— FromtheHeart (@joanns992) January 4, 2022
Unsurprisingly, Gachet’s gesture also warmed the hearts of those at JDF.
Gachet told TNN the long-time food manufacturer reached out to him on Wednesday around 1 p.m to deliver the delicious news the company would be presenting him with a year’s supply of breakfast bowls.
The best part?
JDF also confirmed it would also be donating 100,000 breakfasts to Feeding America, a nationwide hunger-relief charity founded in 1979 that helps more than 40 million hungry Americans yearly, in Gachet’s name.
“That one bowl turned into 100,000 breakfast items given out to a charity in my name,” a stunned Gachet told TNN. “I would have never expected that.”
While Gachet said he is “more than grateful” to be receiving a year’s supply of tasty Jimmy Dean meals, it is the donation that means the most to him.
“From helping one person that was hungry on the road to 100,000 people suffering with starvation, I’m humbled to hear they will be getting fed by Jimmy Dean in my name.”
He called JDF a “great company” for making such a donation.
“It shows they really care,” Gachet stated.
JDF was founded in 1969 by country music singer and actor Jimmy Dean, who passed away in 2010.
Today, JDF is operated by parent company Tyson Foods, based in Springdale, AR.
Gachet’s story is a reminder to us all that we never know when a simple act of kindness will have an impact felt around the world.
Photos courtesy Jean-Carlo Gachet