Stranded motorists share tales of kindness amid chaos
Posted February 12, 2014
Updated February 12, 2016
Raleigh, N.C. — Triangle roads were gridlocked Wednesday by a snowstorm that ground traffic to a halt and trapped thousands of residents on the roads.
But there was charity amid the chaos.
Residents from across the region reported random acts of kindness by strangers who helped them push their stuck and sliding cars or even gave them a ride home.
Allison Pia was trying to drive home from work in Cary when she was trapped in the gridlock and decided to leave her car in a store parking lot. She called her mom, Darlene Sekel, who advised her to walk toward the house.
Sekel started walking to meet her, and the two encountered each other near a roundabout on Chatham Road.
That’s also where they found a guy named Tony.
“This wonderful man named Tony in a huge gray truck stopped in front of (Allison) and said, ‘Hey, do you need some help?’” Sekel said. “He picked us up and took us both home.”
Tony wouldn’t give them his last name or contact information or take Sekel up on an offer of a hot drink to warm up. The mystery man told her he had to be on his way to help other stranded drivers.
“I want to give a shout out to Tony in Cary,” Sekel said. “Thank you for helping us.”
In Raleigh, Rosemary Brookshire was stuck on Wade Avenue about 2:30 p.m. after her vehicle couldn’t make it up an incline.
She turned to find five men rallying to her rescue.
“These guys had been helping another car, and when they saw me, they jumped over and started scraping under my tires until I finally got up the hill,” Brookshire said. “Somehow, I eventually made it home, but I’d sure still be there if they hadn’t helped.”
Brookshire said she wanted to get their names so she could give them a little cash reward for helping her. But the men are Hispanic and don’t speak English, and Brookshire doesn’t speak Spanish.
“But we all smiled a lot,” she said. “What a predicament.”