Anonymous diner in Southwest Florida leaves $10K tip for entire restaurant staff

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Anonymous diner in Southwest Florida leaves $10K tip for entire restaurant staff (CNN Newsource)

Restaurant workers are feeling the pinch as more people are staying home to avoid exposure to coronavirus.

One diner wanted to help out, so he left a tip massive enough for Skillets entire staff to share.

It was an unexpected gift at an uncertain time.

"And he said 'I want each person in this restaurant to get $500,'" said Ross Edlund, owner of Skillets. "The manager distributed it to all the employees."

The $10,000 tip was left by a regular diner at Skillets.

"People come in and they become family. We know where they are from, we know how many kids they have, and we know what's going on in their lives," Edlund said. "They become a part of our team, a part of our restaurant. There was genuine concern from our guests for our staff, which is very heartwarming to me."

Little did they know, Gov. Ron DeSantis would force dining rooms statewide to close the next day.

"We want everyone to stay healthy and well," Eldund said. "We believe that what is being done is the correct thing in spite of the fact it's causing us hardship."

But Eldund looks on the bright side because acts of kindness are spreading in the community.

"It's not the greatest situation, but if we don't put a positive spin on it, we're just going to make things worse. It makes me feel like we are doing more than just serving eggs and pancakes," he said. "That we're offering a respite from the world."

He thanks the man who thought about others before himself.

"Thank you very, very much," Eldund said. "You are a really decent person, and you have touched our staff deeply. Thank you."

Eldund says he knows the man who left the tip, but he's respecting his wishes to remain anonymous.