Plano waiter gets surprise $700 tip from customers

A server at a North Texas Mexican restaurant got some big help from his customers right when he needed it the most.

Jon Reed has been working at Chuy's in Plano for five years. He knows his customers by name and they know him, too.

“We say, ‘Is Jon going to be here? Who's here? Who can we eat with? Who's going to give us the best service?’” said customer Linda Lowden. “He knows our order. We don't even have to tell him.”

But two weeks ago, four of his regular customers noticed he seemed to have something on his mind. Reed said he was stressed because he was falling behind on rent that was due the next day.

“They were like, ‘You look really tired man.’ I was like, ‘Well I've been working a lot,’” he recalled. “They were like, ‘Well how far behind are you?’ I was like, ‘Pretty far.’ And that's kind of the extent of the conversation I wanted to go through with them.”

So the customers pulled Reed’s manager aside and left a whopping $700 tip on their $40 tab.

“Of all the years I've been in the business, this would probably be the top neatest thing I've seen in the business,” said general manager Wendy Smith.

Reed’s reaction to the generous tip was priceless.

“I literally went to the table and picked up the credit card receipt. And looked at it and literally dropped it and was shocked,” Reed said. “I just had a big smile, kind of teared up, watered up a little bit.”

Reed says all the built-up stress that had earlier that day just melted away.

“Words don't give meaning to how I felt. Overwhelmed with emotion,” said Reed. “When you get that shocking act of kindness, it's beautiful. I think that's what life's all about.”

Reed says he ended up ‘paying it forward’ a little bit by buying his coworkers a round of energy drinks to help them get through their shift.