Kindness Matters: South GA Publix Employee Pays For Customer’s Groceries


Tonia Davis never would have guessed that her Monday trip to the grocery store would end up with someone else taking care of the bill. But that’s exactly what happened at a South Georgia Publix when an employee paid for her groceries.

Where it started

It happened just one week before Valentine’s Day. Davis’ daughter Mallorie Smith wrote about the surprising offer in a Facebook post.

Davis had picked up her granddaughter from school and then went to the Publix grocery store in Lee County, Smith recalled. It was raining that day. Together they shopped, filled a cart, and headed to the checkout.

The total was about $70. But when Davis went to pay, this usual shopping trip took a turn. She reached for her wallet, but couldn’t find it. Frantically searching in the checkout line, it just wasn’t there.

She ran out to her car thinking it must be there, only to rush back empty-handed into the store. Davis’ husband, who was about 20 minutes away, offered to pay over the phone. But that was not an available option.

How it ended

Out of options, she resolved to leave it all at the register and come back later to shop again with her wallet and payment. But one of the Publix associates at checkout said that wouldn’t be necessary.

The associate, named Chaz, told Davis he would pay for her grocery bill. Her immediate reply was, “absolutely not, I couldn’t let you do that.” But Chaz insisted he make the payment.

So, she let him pay for the groceries.

And, in classic Publix associate fashion, Chaz offered to help bring the groceries out to Davis’ car. She agreed, and took this grateful group selfie in the parking lot.

Tonia Davis and her granddaughter Milbrey pause for a photo with Chaz, a Publix associate who paid for their groceries.

But before leaving, she made sure to leave her contact information with him and promised that she would return the same day with cash to pay him back.

And that’s exactly what she did. Davis’ wallet was at her home, right where she had left it. She brought the cash back to the store and repaid Chaz in full.

It’s certainly not every day a Publix employee pays for a customer’s groceries. But this story is a reminder of what’s possible.

“There are still good people in this world,” Smith noted, “May God bless you, Chaz!”

Featured image courtesy of Google Maps via Jill Hernandez.

Copyright 229 Life 2023. All rights reserved.

Christian is the founder of 229 Life, a community hub for South Georgia. He likes exploring, eating new foods, and beach vacations. Say hello on Twitter at @tellmckinney.


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