Arkansas restaurant employees surprise coworker with new car for his birthday

A Baja Grill employee in Little Rock, Ark., had quite an eventful birthday this week when his coworkers surprised him with a car.

Kelly Toler has been the nighttime host at Baja Grill for nearly two years, THV11 reports, and had been commuting by bus or by hitching a ride with a coworker.

“I was getting to work, I would either ride the bus or get a ride with one of my coworkers who was passing by my house on the way in,” said Toler to THV11.

But his 57th birthday changed all that when his coworkers got together and bought Toler a car.

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“It was everyone’s idea. I was looking at cars on the marketplace, and then one of the servers came to me and she had the idea on her own. And then turns out simultaneously two other servers were thinking about the same thing… It was just a group effort,” said Heather Baber, General Manager at Baja Grill, to THV11.

Toler said when he went in on Monday, the restaurant employees showered him with gifts.

“I got a gift bag with 6-pack of beer, some candy and a gift certificate for Kroger. Very generous. That alone teared me up a little bit. Later they called me outside and told me they were going to take a picture, called me outside and presented me with a car, and it’s overwhelming,” said Toler.

Baber agreed Toler seemed overwhelmed, but happy.

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“Yes! Yes. He was very surprised, very overwhelmed. Lots of tears. He finished out his shift last night and there were tears on and off all night. He said it was the best day of his life,” said Baber.

The video, which was shared on Facebook, caught the sweet moment of Toler receiving the car from his coworkers.

“This awesome staff came together & surprised our wonderful nighttime host with a car! Good people doing something nice for another good person,” the caption read.

Toler said this isn’t the first time those at the restaurant have gone above and beyond for him.

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Toler said despite not having any restaurant experience, the Baja Grill owner took a chance on him.

“Craig the owner was able to take me in and gave me a chance, and you know, I’m very fortunate,” said Toler.

“This is a great group of people here. You know they say friends are the family you’d had if you could pick your family. Well, I’ve been very fortunate here,” he said to THV1.