Her husband had just died the night before when a woman, weary with grief, pulled into a Dutch Bros coffee shop in Vancouver.
She could not hide her tears from the employee who appeared at the drive-thru window. That employee was 19-year-old Pierce Dunn.
Dunn had been trained to whip up tasty coffee in a flash with an attitude of optimism and joy, and in that moment, he took his job as a barista to the next level by finding out what was wrong.
The woman tearfully poured out her story, explaining that her husband, just 37, had died.
Dunn responded with compassion and love, asking the woman if she would like him to pray with her. She readily agreed, and Dunn was quickly joined by two coworkers as they leaned out the window to reach the woman’s hand.
Dunn gave the woman a free drink and told her she was always welcome at Dutch Bros if she ever needed support.
The moment was witnessed by Barbara Danner, who had been waiting in line behind the vehicle. Danner snapped a photo which went viral back in 2016, and still circulates today.
“Turns out the young lady in line ahead of us lost her 37-year-old husband last night,” Danner wrote on Facebook. “When the DB guys & gals noticed she was falling apart, they stopped everything and prayed with her for several minutes, invited her to come back for prayer and support, as well as anything else that she might need.”
Dunn said that the emotional moment left everyone in tears.
“That moment was absolutely incredible,” Dunn told The Oregonian. “It was so emotional.”
“She was crying. I shed a few tears. We’ve cried since as well. When something that real happens, it hits close to home,” Dunn said.
Dunn, a Christian, said that he prayed the woman would feel loved and supported and that God would bring her peace in the midst of her grief.
Evan Freeman, 21 at the time, was one of the other employees who joined the prayer group. Freeman said he does not consider himself a religious person, but he did not hesitate to pray for a woman who took comfort from prayer.
Franchise owner Jessica Chudek said she was proud of her employees, but not surprised. “We do these kinds of things every day,” Chudek said, “and rarely is it caught on camera.”
Truth and Accuracy
We are committed to truth and accuracy in all of our journalism. Read our editorial standards.