One New Jersey police officer was dining at a local restaurant when he overheard a pregnant waitress voicing her dilemma to customers. The officer left a $100 tip and a note, which left the expectant mother in tears.
Courtney English is like so many other young adults who are trying to make ends meet. Add a newborn baby into the mix, and life can become quite overwhelming. According to NJ.com, Courtney was working at the Lamp Post Diner and serving the lunch crowd when she got to talking with customers about the upcoming birth of her first child.
Courtney was nearly eight months pregnant and had been working at the Gloucester Township diner to save as much money as possible before her daughter was born. During her shift, a South Jersey cop overheard the conversations and felt compelled to take action. Courtney wasn’t expecting what would happen next, but it brought her to tears.
The Voorhees Township police officer was apparently a new dad himself, New York Post reported. The officer was dining on a salad at a nearby table when he must have overheard Courtney’s conversation. When he paid the bill for his meal, the anonymous officer included a generous $100 tip on the $8.75 check, along with a short and simple note: “Enjoy your first. You will never forget it.”
“He must have overheard my conversation with other customers when I told them that it was my first baby and that I was going out of work soon,” Courtney said. “One of the cashiers told me he left me $100 and I started crying. He had already left at that point.” Courtney’s dad, Brian Cadigan, was so touched by the kind officer’s act of generosity that he took to Facebook to post a photo of the receipt and deliver a message of thanks.
“What a wonderful person to not only leave a VERY generous tip, but a lovely message, I don’t know you Mr. Police Officer, but you made my little girl cry, and made her year,” Cadigan wrote about the officer, who has insisted on remaining anonymous. “Thank you, I always had the utmost respect for Officers, but you went above and beyond not just an officer, but a beautiful human being. God Bless.”
Cadigan described the “amazing gesture” while speaking with The Post. “It made her whole year. There’s a lot of bad stuff said about police and here’s one officer who went out of his way to make a generous offer just to say, ‘Hey, it’s your first and enjoy it,’” he said. “She texted me and said, ‘I just got a $100 tip from this nice officer who left me a note for the baby.’”
Voorhees Police Chief Louis Bordi told CBS Philly that the officer wished to remain anonymous. The officer, who had no way of knowing for certain, was spot on about Courtney’s situation. Cadigan said his unmarried daughter, who lives with him in Sewell, “works her butt off” to make ends meet — even though her former boyfriend, the baby’s father, remains “completely supportive.”
Courtney, who worked very hard to earn her GED from Rowan College, planned to take off work for about six to eight weeks after her daughter — whom she planned to name Kayleigh — is born. The young mom said she eventually hopes to pursue a career in nursing.
Diner owner Nick Hionas said the story proves that there is still “faith left in humanity.” He said, “It’s absolutely amazing. The officer just had a baby and he said it was the most glorious day of his life and how he’ll never forget it.” Hionas described Courtney as a “happy-go-lucky, sweet girl who goes above and beyond.”
Courtney English wasn’t complaining about her dilemma of having to take time off work for a newborn baby while still needing to make ends meet. It was the reality of being a new dad that tugged on the anonymous cop’s heartstrings, wanting to make sure Courtney was able to enjoy every minute of having a newborn baby. That’s praiseworthy.