When Kindness Goes Viral

Joey Prusak

Joey Prusak

It all started when a blind man dropped a $20 bill in a Dairy Queen. What store manager Joey Prusak did next was covered by newspapers and television stations all over the world. Here’s the story (with accompanying video) as it appeared on the CBS Minnesota website.

I was especially interested in this story because my wife, daughter and I lived in Hopkins for twelve years and often went to the Dairy Queen on Mainstreet. I still go for chiropractic treatment and massage at Hopkins Health & Wellness Center just down the street; and Frank Harris, the outstanding massage therapist there, is Joey Prusak’s stepfather.

by Edgar Linares

Joey Prusak of Hopkins is still shocked after witnessing someone steal cash from a blind man in the Dairy Queen store he manages.

Prusak said while working the register on Sept. 10 he saw the blind man he was helping drop a $20 bill.

“The lady behind him picked it up really quickly,” Prusak said. “I had no time to say, ‘Sir, you dropped that.’”

Prusak simply thought the woman was going to hand it back to the man as he struggled to put his cash and debt card back in his pocket.

“I expected to her to be like ‘Oh, sir, here you go,’” he said. “But she just stood there and watched him walk by and she then put it in her purse.”

That’s when Prusak asked her to return the money. She refused saying it was hers and that she dropped it by accident. Prusak argued with the woman and then asked her to leave.

“I told her ‘Ma’am, you can either return the $20 bill or you can leave the store, because I’m not going to serve someone as disrespectful as you,’” he said.

The woman made a scene and left after having some choice words with Prusak.

Prusak then helped the rest of his customers, apologizing to each one of them for what had happened.

A short time later, Prusak approached the blind man sitting and eating, and he reached into his own pocket and gave the man $20.

“I felt like the right thing to do was to give him the money,” Prusak said. “I said, ‘You happened to the drop this.’”

A customer who witnessed the kind act was so impressed that they decided to fill out a compliment form on the company’s web site.

The anonymous letter said “Joey has forever sealed my fate as a lifelong customer.”

That letter went to the owner of the Main Street DQ.

It was then printed and pinned on a cork board for all the employees to see. One employee had the bright idea to snap a photo of the letter and place it on Facebook. That’s when the letter went viral (see the actual letter at the end of this post).

“People started sharing it and liking it,” Prusak said. “And one of my friends saw it and posted it on reddit.com. By Monday morning it was one of the top things.”

Prusak said he received a call from International Dairy Queen and was told he’ll be receiving “something” in the mail.

Joey Prusak is still astonished by the recognition he’s received. Offers and phone calls are continuing to pour in, including one from Warren Buffet, whose company, Berkshire Holdings, owns Dairy Queen. Here’s a recap of the aftermath of Joey’s act of kindness.


Here’s the letter an anonymous customer wrote to Dairy Queen after witnessing Joey Prusak’s act of kindness

New York City police office LarryDePrimo buys a pair of boots for a barefoot man in need

New York City police office LarryDePrimo buys a pair of boots for a barefoot man in need

Joey’s story reminds of the act of kindness performed by New York City cop Larry DePrimo, who purchased a pair of boots for an apparently homeless man sitting on a sidewalk in the cold.

The circumstances are different, of course, but  Joey Prusak and Larry DePrimo both dug into their own wallet to do what they thought was right, with no thought of reward or recognition for themselves. In both cases, a witness documented their act of kindness, which otherwise would have gone unnoticed, and shared it with the world.

Click here to view all my posts on the transcendent power of kindness.


Phil is the author of Through God’s Eyes: Finding Peace and Purpose in a Troubled World, a comprehensive guide to living a spiritual life. Who will benefit from reading it?

Anyone who is on a spiritual path, or wants to start one
Anyone who loves life, or wants to learn how to
Anyone who is happy, or wants to be happier

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Through God’s Eyes won first place in the “Spirituality and Inspirational” category at the San Diego Book Awards on June 22, 2013.

Here is a two-minute video introduction to Through God’s Eyes.

Want to learn more about Through God’s Eyes? Here is a free 40-page PDF sampler from the book that includes:

• an overview of the book
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Just click on the link below to download your free PDF sampler!


Phil’s eBook, The Logic of Living a Spiritual Life: Supporting a Life of Faith Through Logic and Reason, is now available for 99 cents on Amazon.

Order it at GodIsLogical.com.

In this eBook, you’ll find answers to questions like:
• What is the cornerstone of a spiritual life, and why?
• What is the secret to liberating yourself from other people’s judgments and expectations?
• Why is there an exception to “Everything happens for a reason”?

Those who worship logic instead of God are only half right. Not only is it logical to believe in God and to live a faith-based life, the existence of a loving, benevolent God that governs all creation is perhaps the only systematic worldview that explains every aspect of life.

Schedule a Mastery Mentoring phone session with Phil to learn how to apply principles of spiritual living more effortlessly and effectively. Priced affordably! Click here to e-mail Phil for details.

SiSe_fullcover_final.inddPhil is also the author of Sixty Seconds: One Moment Changes Everything, a collection of 45 inspiring, life-changing stories from prominent people he interviewed, including Joan Borysenko, Deepak Chopra, geneticist Dr. Francis Collins, acclaimed sportswriter Frank Deford, Dr. Larry Dossey, Wayne Dyer, Dan Millman, Caroline Myss, Dr. Christiane Northrup, Dr. Dean Ornish, Dr. Rachel Naomi Remen, Dr. Bernie Siegel, James Van Praagh, singer Billy Vera, Doreen Virtue, Neale Donald Walsch, and bassist Victor Wooten.

Here is a three-minute video that introduces you to Phil and his book. Click here to order Sixty Seconds. Click here to ask Phil to add you to his e-mail list for updates on his blog and books.

Reading this book is like spending a few minutes face to face with each of the contributors and listening to their personal stories. Click here to read unsolicited testimonials from readers. Learn more by visiting the official Sixty Seconds website.

Sixty Seconds was one of three finalists in the General Interest/How-To category at the 12th annual Visionary Awards presented by COVR (Coalition of Visionary Resources) in Denver on June 27, 2009.

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