Kindness can impact people in such incredible ways. We all can benefit from kindness in our lives and it’s important that we share that same compassion to others. No matter how small of a gesture, it can make a difference in someone’s life.
A man named Charlie Poveromo from New Jersey was always looking out for the people around him.
He was someone who made sure that everyone felt special and taken care of. As the lead bartender at one of New Jersey’s finest restaurants, working with people was his second nature.
Those kinds of people are hard to come by so it’s no surprise that Poveromo influenced so many people’s lives.
Everyone that knew Charlie had nothing but incredible things to say about him. His boss of 13 years Tony Del Gatto even said,
“He was one of the finest gentlemen I had ever met. Everybody felt like an individual to him. He spoke directly to people, his eyes never wandered,”
Outside of his work life, Charlie was still spreading kindness in any way he could.
About 5 years New Jersey was going through an intense heatwave and he saw the local garbage men look extremely exhausted and pale.
That’s when he ran into his house and grabbed a jug of water with plastic cups for the overheated garbage men. Charlie gave them all the water they needed so they could cool off and enjoy a shady spot.
The garbage men were beyond grateful for his kindness and went back to their route.
But Charlie wasn’t going to stop there, he wanted to make sure they were always taken care of especially in the summer heat.
So he went to the local grocery store and grabbed a case of water bottles, ice, and a cooler.
His wife recalled the time when his legacy began saying,
“The next morning at 6:30 am, after working all night and only getting a few hours of sleep, he loaded them into one of our coolers and waited for the truck to roll up,” she said. “I watched as he went up to the truck and explained that, from now on, the cooler would contain cold drinks for them all summer long.”
Even though Charlie only had one day off a week he continued to pick up waters for the crew.
It became a special ritual for him. But little did Charlie know his refreshment cooler was the talk of the town. The sanitation workers would visit regularly and even police officers, firemen, and construction workers would come by and grab a drink! The cooler became the neighborhood’s finest attraction.
Sadly, in March of 2018, Charlie passed away from a heart attack.
But his wife Velvet who had been married to Charlie for 37 years, knew there couldn’t be summer without Charlie’s refreshment cooler so she decided to continue his legacy.
On the cooler, she attached a photo of him and a note explaining the loss of her dear Charlie.
Velvet told NorthJersey.com,
“I had to step into his shoes, Once the weather started getting warm, I thought, ‘Oh, my God, the water bottles.’ I had to do it. It was his tradition, and I had to honor him.”
Velvet shared her husband’s legacy on Facebook which started a Charlie’s Cooler hashtag inspiring others to spread kindness and pay it forward.
The special coolers were showing up in cities all over New Jersey as well as upstate New York and Wyoming.
Velvet shared how even in Charlie’s passing he continues to teach her new things and put a smile on her face.
It just goes to show, the impact one person can have has the power to transform an entire community.
Chalie’s legacy lives on!
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