Members of the Hungry Howie’s in Holland, Michigan recently made quite the delivery for a long time customer.
Adrian Van Nieuwland loved his pizza, and for years he made his usual order, a medium three cheeser pleaser with butter cheese crust.
“He had one order and that was his order every time. When it popped up on the screen you knew Adrian ordered,” said Assistant General Manager Amanda Ortiz.
But towards the end of May, the crew at Hungry Howie’s noticed Adrian stopped calling.
After not getting in touch with Van Nieuwland on the phone, employees went to his home to check on him.
“They went to his house to check on him and found him laying on the floor. And they weren’t sure how long he’d been down there,” said Hungry Howie’s driver Gabbe Raqib.
Family members say Van Nieuwland had been on the floor for about a day, unable to get up. They also say his cellphone was out of reach.
Van Nieuwland was taken to the hospital, where the Hungry Howie’s employees visited him.
“We went the night he went to the hospital, we went there a few hours after he got admitted,” said Ortiz. “He seemed to be doing great. We joked around. I gave him the gift card and said ‘you’re probably hungry.'”
Family members say Van Nieuwland was in the hospital for eight days but eventually passed away.
Employees at Hungry Howie’s say while they’re sad for the loss, they’re happy they were able to help their longtime customer and friend and that he didn’t pass away alone.
“It’s tragic and my heart breaks for him. But if anything I’m just happy that we stopped him from dying alone, on the floor of his house,” said Raqib.
Family members tell FOX 17 that he slipped into a coma and that Van Nieuwland’s family members were surrounding him when he passed away and they are thankful that the Hungry Howie’s employees took action to help him.
“It’s more than pizza to us because our customers are our family. That’s our family,” said Ortiz.