Hundreds of local Orlando residents showed up on Sunday to donate blood after the mass shooting at Pulse nightclub. And ready to serve them was Chick-fil-A, the restaurant chain that ordinarily is closed on Sundays.
Several Chick-fil-A restaurants in Orlando on Sunday delivered sandwiches and iced tea to blood drives supporting victims of the gay nightclub terrorist attack.
The restaurant on University and Rouse Road delivered the food free of charge to the One Blood donation center, the DC Gazette reported.
A second location at Lee Vista posted pictures on Facebook Sunday of employees delivering free food to another blood drive.
“A few members of our awesome team decided to go into work on a Sunday and make some food for people waiting in line to donate blood,” the store said. “We love our city and love the people in our community. #prayfororlando.”
"The events in Orlando stirred our local restaurant owners and their teams to band together to provide nourishment to first responders as well as volunteers who donated blood," company spokeswoman Carrie Kurlander said in a statement. "We do not think this requires any recognition. It is the least we can do in this community we love."
This sort of compassion isn’t out of the ordinary for the company, but given the owners’ strong Christian faith and defense of traditional marriage in the past, it came as a surprise to some.
“But, wait, those people were waiting to give blood to victims that were mostly gay people,” Vianna Vaughan wrote in the DC Gazette. “Doesn’t Chick Fil A hate gays? That’s what we kept being told.”
“Turns out, that while the founders definitely don’t approve of that choice of lifestyle, they believe in compassion,” she added. “Who knew?”