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DOYLESTOWN, Pa. -- Customers of Doylestown, Pa.'s Wawa are paying back one store employee for four years of good service by donating money to buy him a car, reported the Doylestown-Buckingham-New Britain Patch.
Cris Sterling, 53, suffers from a non-cancerous, inoperable brain tumor, as well as neck and back issues, but remains one of Wawa's most cheerful employees. "There are people who come in here all the time. You smile. You say, 'How are you?' and mean it, and you get to know them," Sterling told the Patch. "Everybody is born with that ability … as long as you live that way, you can't help but be happy."
To pay for medical costs not covered by his insurance, Sterling sold his van, and the borrowed vehicle he's been using has proven unreliable. Instead of offering only sympathy, the store's customers have begun donating to a fund started by Fulton Bank. As of last week, $1,400 had been collected, almost half of the $3,000 goal.
"He knows everything about everyone else; he knows all my kids' names," said customer Julie Traina. "I felt bad I didn't know more about his problems."
This Sunday, Traina's son Jack, 13, and his teammates on the seventh grade CBAA Wolfpack basketball team will sponsor a fundraiser for Sterling at the Uno Chicago Grill, 1661 Easton Road in Warrington, Pa. From 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. Uno's has agreed to donate 20 percent of sales when customers mention the fundraiser. Team members will work donation tables during the day.
"This is an incredible community," Sterling told the Patch. "Each one of you touches my heart every day for how you are, and that truly makes Doylestown an extraordinary place to live and work. I feel truly blessed."