A Maryland couple stranded on Interstate 95 in Virginia after a winter storm slammed several Eastern states helped distribute bread from a nearby bakery truck to dozens of other stuck motorists who also had not eaten for hours.
All it took was a phone call to ask for permission.
“We were tired, frustrated, and hungry. Many of the people stuck out here had small children, were elderly, had pets in the car, and hadn’t eaten in almost a whole day,” Holihan shared in a post on Facebook.
But she and Noe had an idea. At approximately 9 a.m. Tuesday, they saw a truck from Schmidt Baking Company ahead of them, according to multiple reports.
By that time, the couple had not eaten for about 37 hours.
They reached the company’s customer service line and asked if they could open the truck and distribute the shipment of food it was carrying.
Holihan admitted on Facebook that “we didn’t think it would actually work” but, less than 20 minutes later, the couple “received a personal call from the owner of the company.”
Chuck Paterakis, one of the owners of H&S Bakery, which owns Schmidt Baking Company, was on the phone. He soon directed the truck’s driver, Ron Hill, to distribute bread to the stranded motorists.
“This driver Ron Hill opened the back of the truck and with the help of some people close by passed out bread to more than 50 cars who were all incredibly thankful,” Holihan shared on Facebook. “This was one of the kindest moments I have ever witnessed.”
Paterakis said “it was an easy decision” to distribute the contents of the truck, which included loaves of bread and rolls, The Washington Post reported. He said the bakery was “very humbled and grateful that we could help.”
Holihan told the Post that she and her husband, Hill and others who were stuck on the interstate handed out approximately 300 packages of bread.
“We just kept giving it out until we couldn’t walk anymore because it was so freezing,” Holihan told NBC affiliate WBAL. “It felt incredible just hearing people say thank you and hearing people just so relieved to finally have food in their car, food in their system and in their kids’ system. It was a really incredible feeling.”
Ice and snow stranded hundreds of drivers on Interstate 95 after a winter storm hit multiple states and brought over a foot of snow to some areas. More than 300,000 people were without power in Maryland and Virginia.
USA TODAY has reached out to Holihan and H&S Bakery.