Good Samaritans pay it forward at Englewood restaurant during the holidays

Reporter: Gina Tomlinson Writer: Jack Lowenstein
Published: Updated:
Credit: WINK News.

Patrons at a restaurant in Charlotte County decided to pay it forward, and it started a chain reaction during the holiday season in Southwest Florida.

Saturday, when good Samaritans decided to pay it forward at Nicola’s Italian Kitchen in Englewood, everyone began to jump on board. Before all was said and done, servers received a generous tip. And one mother in need of some holiday cheer left Nicola’s with a big smile.

“There’s still good people out there,” Nicola’s manager Christina Kryzanski said. “There’s still decent human beings out there that care.”

The people are gone. The restaurants seats are now empty, but a random act of kindness will likely be remembered at the Englewood restaurant for a long time.

“It was so heartwarming,” waitress Gwyn Pontoni said. “I was speechless.”

Pontoni served a couple who asked to take care of another table’s bill.

“Told them your dinner is paid for by the person behind them,” Pontoni said. “And they were overwhelmed by the whole thing.”

Then, something magical began to take place at Nicola’s.

“The second table paid for the third table,” Kryzanski said.

That’s where Kryzanski was talking to two guests before their bill came.

“It was a mom and son, and the mom was going through chemo,” Kryzanski said.

This added to how special the gesture became.

“They’re probably going through so much as it is,” Kryzanski said. “And just to have that dinner paid for really just hit me.”

With no one left in the restaurant to pay for, the final guests at the third table tipped each of the servers working.

“It was such an amazing moment, the fact that one act of kindness just transferred over,” Kryzanski said.

Kryzanski said the experience at the restaurant is something that she hopes can happen similarly in other people’s lives.

”I would like to see more people do it,” Kryzanski said. “I want to see more positivity in this world. There’s way too much negativity going on right now. We need to see more positivity, and that’s a start.”

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