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Residents come forward to help a soldier in need (video)
February 14, 2017
ABC News put shoppers in San Antonio, Texas, to the test to see what they would do if they saw a military veteran unable to pay his grocery bill on their special segment, "What Would You Do."
In the video below, news correspondent John Quinones watched as actor Ryan, (also a veteran) and actress Lorraine play a customer and cashier. Ryan pretends he doesn't have enough cash to cover his bill to see what people in line behind him will do.
ABC News chose San Antonio for this experiment because San Antonio has one of the largest military populations in the country. It is often affectionately referred to as "Military City," according to ABC News.
The first woman in the segment, Linda Tuppers, tells Ryan that her son served in the military and offers to pay for the extra expenses on his groceries. In addition she tells him that she runs a food pantry and asks him to stop by, according to ABC News.
When Quinones pulls Tuppers aside and informs her that the man was an actor, she just nods. "Well, that's what I do. I help people. Soldiers sometimes. ... Soldiers shouldn't have to do that, we should be taking care of our military much better than we are," she told ABC.
While unemployment rates for veterans has reached a seven-year low, roughly 4.6 percent of Iraq and Afghanistan vets are still unemployed and an average of about 3.9 percent of all veterans are trying to find work. This means that over 400,000 veterans do not have work, according to Military Times.
Over the course of the day many customers help pay for his bill, including one woman who offers $3 and asks the cashier to cover an extra 50 cents so she can pay for her own groceries too.
Many of those who offered to help said that they helped because they had been in need before and understood how he felt. Through the entire day, people donated over $100 to help Ryan cover his bill. The show made sure everyone who participated was reimbursed, according to ABC.