Mary Talboys was behind at least 12 cars at a McDonalds takeout window recently. So, she tuned into Christmas music on her radio and rolled down her window so her wait-mates could enjoy the carols as well.
When she finally got to the window and held out her money to the attendant, she was told that wasn't necessary. The woman in the car just before her had paid for her meal, sending on the greeting: "Merry Christmas and Happy New Year."
Honoring a hero: Republican legislators and Red Meat Radio hosts Sen. Howard Stephenson and Rep. Greg Hughes honored Allen Fratto on a recent program on K-TALK for his bravery in running down an armed robber who had knocked down an elderly woman and stolen her purse.
Fratto, who owns a small package delivery business and contracts with Federal Express, was unarmed, but still grabbed the gunman and held him down until police arrived.
Hughes, in appreciation, gave Fratto two tickets to the fights that night at the South Towne Expo Center, featuring Chris Fernandez, who successfully defended his welterweight World Boxing Union title against Allen "American Boy" Litzau.
Saving Rocky: Sylvia Haro of Kaysville was visiting her mother in Clearfield on Dec. 15 when her 2-year-old Chihuahua, Rocky, was discovered missing.
Frantic, Haro and family members searched most of the night for Rocky, to no avail. They put up posters with his picture the next day, continuing their search throughout the week.
Several callers said they saw Rocky in the fields around the railroad tracks and at the Freeport Center in Clearfield. Rocky also was spotted in Layton and both the Davis County and Weber County Animal Control offices were alerted to the missing dog.
Six days later, Davis County Animal Control saw Rocky near the railroad tracks and tried to call him, but he wouldn't come. They contacted Haro's brother, who came to the tracks. Rocky recognized him and immediately ran to him.
Haro says Rocky is skin and bones and has several wounds from apparent fights with the feral cats in the area. But the little red sweater he was wearing kept him warm enough to survive the ordeal.
Guardian angels: Meg Griggs of Salt Lake City gathers several of her female friends together each holiday season for what they call the "Red Dress Dinner." They agree on a group gift to donate to a local nonprofit, then raise money through their annual gala. Last year, they purchased several pre-paid cellphones for a local domestic violence center.
This year, Griggs' group chose the Rape Recovery Center as their charity. Through a raffle and auction at Pig in a Jelly Jar, a Salt Lake City restaurant, they raised enough to purchase 12 wicker chairs and seat cushions from Ikea for the center's group therapy room.
In time of need: Peter Steen and his family recently went to the Red Robin restaurant in Murray to celebrate his daughter's 8th birthday. After their meal, they discovered their car had a flat tire. As Steen stumbled in the dark and gale-force winds to get the tire changed, his wife Jodi brought their three kids back inside the restaurant to stay warm.
When the couple went to retrieve the children, they discovered the hostess and wait staff had pooled their money to give each kid a few dollars to buy items from the vending machines in the restaurant.
Public servants: An elderly couple, Jerry and Barbara, who live in the Salt Lake City area of 10th East and 20th South have tried for a month to track down two workers wearing orange uniforms who were in a truck that appeared to be hauling tree branches and leaves so they can thank them.
Jerry, who suffers from Parkinson's disease, fell in front of his home and badly cut his hand on a barbed-wire fence he grabbed to thwart the fall. The workers stopped to assist. One ripped off the sleeve of his uniform for a tourniquet. They lifted Jerry into Barbara's car and he was rushed to the hospital. They came back the next day to check on Jerry.
Barbara says the incident reminded her of a speech that former Salt Lake Tribune publisher Jack Gallivan gave during the Winter Olympics in 2002 about the "spirit of the people."
The names on their uniforms were Chipman and Blackburn, but Barbara couldn't find them as Salt Lake City or county workers. She would like to thank them, so she hopes they read this column.