Like many other Floridians bracing for Hurricane Irma’s arrival, Sanford resident Pam Brekke spent days racing from store to store for supplies.
She was hunting for a generator, waiting for empty shelves to be restocked -- and her search was growing desperate. Finding one before Irma makes landfall wasn’t just to make herself more comfortable -- it was a matter of life and death.
“My father’s on oxygen, and I’m worried about this storm," Brekke tearfully told WFTV.
Brekke drove 30 miles Thursday morning to a Lowe’s in Orlando that got a surprise shipment of 200 generators. She was next in line to purchase one when she saw the final unit given to the customer ahead of her. If there were one more generator, it would have been hers.
Brekke broke down, brought to tears by the thought of her father losing oxygen if the power cut out.
But then, she was graced with a random act of kindness and humanity amid the chaos: The customer ahead of her, Ramon Santiago, approached and insisted she take his generator -- the last one in stock -- without knowing why she was crying.
Brekke and Santiago embraced as a reporter caught the exchange on camera and posted it to Facebook. She thanked him for his kindness during her difficult time.
“Everything is okay,” he told her before returning to his shopping.
“I’m very overwhelmed by that man,” Brekke said, fighting back more tears. “God will bless that man."