Dickey’s Barbeque-Pulling at My Heartstrings

I recently came upon an article on Wyff4.com that reported a heartwarming story of a soldier and his BBQ cravings.  A Spartanburg, S.C., resident, 22-year-old Sergeant Danny Sheppard, was shipped to Iraq in July.  While in Iraq, he called his mother and told her that he was craving barbeque from his favorite restaurant, Dickey’s Barbeque Pit.  His mother, Kim, quickly drove to Dickey’s to order a sandwich for her son to send to him overseas.  When she got there, she asked the owner, Bill Friend, to help think of ways to ship the BBQ sandwich.  Instead, Bill asked how many soldiers were in Danny’s platoon.  After Kim said that she didn’t have the money to pay for sandwiches for all 170 members of the platoon, Bill said that it was on the house.  Bill and his co-workers cooked enough briskets and meat to feed all of the members of Danny’s platoon in Iraq and sent it as a “way of saying thanks”.

Reading and watching the broadcast of this story brought tears to my eyes.  I appreciate everything that our soldiers are doing overseas and I continue to think of them and thank them every night.  The measures that Dickey’s restaurant took to bring smiles to the faces of the men and women who are fighting for our freedom is unbelievable.  

I know that Bill Friend probably did this from the goodness of his heart, but it also is great PR for his restaurant.  Dickey’s was given free positive press and positive publicity.  Through the interview with the soldier’s mom, viewers found out that it was specially requested and was his FAVORITE barbeque spot.  This testimony to the deliciousness of the barbeque may convince others to try their sandwiches.  Also, the other soldiers in Danny’s platoon may have never had Dickey’s BBQ before.  This free sandwich may make them love it as much as Danny.  This act of kindness could possibly bring in another 169 dedicated customers when they return from their tours. 

Soldiers, thank you for everything that you do.  God Bless America!

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2 thoughts on “Dickey’s Barbeque-Pulling at My Heartstrings

  1. This post really touches me. Having dated a Marine that was overseas for two years, there were always things that he missed that were simply out of his reach. I think the great thing about this story is that Mr. Friend didn’t intend on receiving PR for his efforts, he only wanted to thank the soldiers for their sacrifice. This goes to show you that PR can come from anywhere and it is not always controlled how we would like and we must always recognize that.

  2. I agree, Kallie. It seems as though Mr. Friend did it from the bottom of his heart. You bring up an interesting point that PR can come from anywhere. Dickey’s could have donated their food to any organization or group, but the fact that they chose to give it to the soldiers in Iraq probably helped people form a connection with Dickey’s. Many people are related to or know someone who is across seas fighting for our country.

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