Best Service in a Restaurant

Laurie Radake, City Diner

Anyone who has ever waited tables has said some version of the following: "If I ever make a ton of money, I am going to leave a $500 tip everywhere I go." For Laurie Radake, this fantasy became a reality — not the giving, but the receiving. Her City Diner shift that July afternoon was progressing normally when three guests seated themselves in her section. They were nondescript, ordered a BLT and a chicken sandwich, and paid their bill with a credit card. They seemed like any other guests until one of them, Seth Collins, stood up with a book in his hand. Inside was a $500 tip. It turns out that Mr. Collins has been traveling the country, spreading joy to servers everywhere as he fulfills the last wish of his deceased brother, Aaron. In his will, Aaron asked Seth to go out and leave an awesome tip in his honor. As a tribute to Aaron, the Collins family set up a donation page and raised more than $60,000, which Seth distributes to servers across the country. And so we bestow this award in their, and Aaron's, honor.

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