To the editor:

My insurance company says its service is “like a good neighbor.” But I met a good neighbor in Anoka way better than insurance. In spite of COVID and all the other chaos.

Recently I was driving from Blaine from seeing my kids, back to my home in St Cloud, when a tire blew out on my SUV on I-10 right in front of Anoka Technical College. No one stopped. I called the “good neighbor” insurance company, who tooled me around for two hours. Tried to send me to a tire place that was closed. Tried to convince me to get towed to a hotel, then towed again to St Cloud. Tried to get me to hire an Uber or a cab and leave the car there. WHAT?

Then a man came along with his son and a nephew. An ordinary, everyday hero. He changed my tire for me, though it took four trips to get the right tools, and he had to meanwhile empty out a storage locker by 9 p.m., that no one was giving him the extra time he needed to do, so he was already busy. But his son had a tire blow out the day before, I heard him say, and he didn’t want to leave a person stranded. It was 90 degrees. He was dripping with sweat. The tire hold broke, and the spare gashed him in the head. But he never even complained. Just made pleasant conversation the whole time.

I didn’t have anything to give him, not much money, but he shook his head. “Pay it forward,” he said.

I just wanted to thank him.

Paying it forward in St Cloud.

Chris St. Germain

St. Cloud

(1) comment


What a great post. So glad to hear a feel good story when we are face so much heaviness these days.

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