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Family gives $500 tips in all 50 states

The Collins clan raised $60K to fulfill their late son's dying wish to honour America's waitstaff.
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Chiara O. Scuri, July 12, 2013 6:10:22 AM

Aaron Collins believed in random acts of kindness.

So much so that the dying man specified in his will that he wished to leave a server a $500 tip on an inexpensive meal. “”[L]eave an awesome tip (and I don’t mean 25%. I mean $500 on a f***ing pizza) for a waiter or waitress,” his will specifically stated.

This came as no surprise to those who knew him.

“He was incredibly sentimental, though he always tried to hide it,” reads a tribute on his website. “The small things people did for him are what touched him the most.  He was generous with the limited means he had, and his last wishes were that any money he had be given freely in ways that would impact those who received it.”

After he passed away, his family did just that, handing the hefty sum over to a hard-working staffer at a nearby restaurant.

The exchange was captured on video, and the gesture proved so moving that the video soon went viral, prompting the family to continue Aaron’s last request.

Thanks to a helping hand from NPR, reports that the family raised $60,000 and planned to hand over a $500 tip to random servers in all 50 U.S. states.

As of July 3, Aaron’s brother, Seth Collins, was filmed handing over the family’s 54th $500 tip to an astonished waitress named Beth at the Thr3e Wise Men restaurant in Indianapolis.

The family’s website has more videos showing similar – and similarly moving – scenarios.

To all the under-appreciated serving staff around the world, know that there are people around who value and appreciate what you do.


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Chiara O. Scuri

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