Adam and Jenny Shickley of Dauphin spearheaded the effort to extend their gratitude to Chad Turns, who has been delivering packages there for almost a decade.
In a sweet gesture, a small town in Pennsylvania decided to throw a party for their town's only UPS driver to thank him for his genuine efforts and hardwork despite the pandemic. The people of Dauphin went all out to surprise Chad Turns, earlier this month, by organizing a socially distanced get-together. He was moved to tears by the thoughtfulness of the townspeople he has been delivering packages to for almost a decade.
The party happened due to the initiative to Adam and Jenny Shickley, who decided to start a PayPal account named "A Gift for Chad - Dauphin UPS Man." Their aim was to be able to collect money to buy a thank you gift for Turns who worked relentlessly through the pandemic. But this turned into something bigger and more memorable than anyone could have imagined.
"The truth is that she was going to set it up and try to get $200 through PayPal and she mistyped and put it in $500," Adam Shickley told Fox News about his wife's initial idea. "And she was like, 'I'm going to leave it. Whatever we get, we get.'" In less than a day, the Shickley's were pleasantly surprised to see that they hit their goal of $500. Jenny took to Facebook to give her community members an update and wrote: "I am in the process of planning and organizing a time when the community might be able to get together to thank him properly. Please be on the lookout for a post about joining the planning group!"
Before the surprise party, a total amount of $1000 was contributed by the people of Dauphin for Turns, along with many sweet handwritten notes. Jenny even set up a Facebook event's page that read: "The community of Dauphin would like to give a BIG thank you to our local UPS driver, Chad!" The surprise was planned to the last detail and included the help of Adam Kerr, a UPS shift supervisor who helped with the logistics of the dispatch from the local UPS office. This was done to ensure that Turns would be oblivious to the gathering and as far as he knew, he was picking up an on-demand delivery from the firehouse.
“It was very overwhelming,” Turns told TODAY. “The idea that they even thought of me to do anything...to go above and beyond and do what they did yesterday was truly amazing to me.” He could not help by cry at the gesture and shared that his wife also teared up. “I always call her when I leave work and she asks me how my day was. It was a tearjerker. It was very touching and humbling," he said. He also spoke about the generosity of the people of Dauphin that he had experienced throughout the year, which included being offered water and cookies on his delivery routes.
"The whole town has had personal experience with Chad," Shickley told CNN. "He once thought a package was a gift and there was a picture on the front. My kids were playing outside so he waited until his shift was done and came back to make sure they didn't see it." Similarly with another resident, Turns was supposed to deliver a package that needed to be signed and found that no one was home. Worried that it was important, he just went to their parent's house to get it signed for them. With the pandemic, the residents of Dauphin like people all over the world started ordering more things online. “He’s been working 60-80 hour weeks for a year,” Shickley said. “He’s been working Christmas-style hours for 365 days.”
"Chad is a great UPSer and has been delivering to Dauphin residents for more than a decade," UPS spokesperson Jackie Fajt said in a statement. "Celebrations like this really highlight the bond our drivers have with their customer base. We appreciate that UPS drivers like Chad are being recognized for how they are moving our world forward."
Cover Image Source: Kristie Vogelsong