Drivers apparently didn’t mind waiting in line for hours to fill their gas tanks and jugs at three specific places after the Jan. 28 ice storm, the staff and store managers put aside their own needs to help their neighbors.
Gina’s Buzz-Thru in Marlow, Hop & Sack in Comanche and Edgewood Kwik Mart, west of Comanche, were overrun with customers wanting fuel and hot food.
At Gina’s, the small family business worked together to keep those lines rolling.
To keep things working, the small convenience store had generators powering lights, including two outdoor spot lights. While two people were out by the gas pumps writing down the fuel sales, more were indoor working, assisting customers.
“They were lined up to Main Street and around. We had two people running gas and registers. We filled up five of those sheets pretty fast. Some people were running out of gas while they waited in line,” he said. “But we didn’t have any fights.”
Last Monday business was still going strong, yet around noon, Davis said it appeared to be slowing down some since other fuel suppliers were opening their doors.
“A lot of people are wanting hot foods and we have had a good rotation of stock. Cigarettes went pretty good, some were buying four or five packs at a time. Most everyone has been calm and collective. They want coffee. A lot of the people were really appreciative. We didn’t go up and we used a lot of diesel in our generators,” Don Davis said.
Something he did enjoy hearing were the “We appreciate you, and God bless you,” he said.
“Some people just were hanging around to get warm and a lot of people left change as tips.”
Edgewood Kwik Mart in Comanche was another store providing the need for the demand of fuel.
Kay Ledford, an employee, said it was chaotic, but everything moved smoothly.
“We were lucky that we had just gotten gas the night before. We had power. I opened at 5:30 in the morning and we got busy shortly after, with cars lined up for half a mile. We had five people working, plus the owner,” Ledford said.
“We appreciate all the people who came out, from everywhere, Marlow, Duncan; we’re just glad we could help,” she said.
Tammy White, manager at Hop & Sack, said a generator at her store kicked in as soon as the power went out and she even praised her own staff, many who came to work on their off-day to help.
“A normal day is about 800 receipts. I probably had about 1,500 come through. We ran out of a lot of hot food. They were taking it as soon as we made it and sometimes it took an hour for pizza to be made,” she said.
“There was one thing I learned, to keep my patience.”
— Toni Hopper is a reporter for The Duncan Banner. She can be reached at 580-255-5354, Ext. 132 or by e-mail at: firstname.lastname@example.org