Mystery man pays it forward

By Lawrence Gullery


A Gisborne family wants to thank a "kind-hearted gentleman" who anonymously paid for their meals while they were dining at The Coffee Club restaurant in Hastings last week.

Hannah Moeke, in a letter to Hawke's Bay Today, said she hoped to one day meet the man who picked up the bill when her whanau settled down for breakfast at the restaurant on the morning of March 12.

Ms Moeke, her mum, brother in law and sister ordered their meals and "ate to our hearts' content" and then went to order drinks afterwards.

"My sister went to order ... on approaching the female staff member she was informed that when we are ready we could leave the restaurant as our meals were paid for.

"She told my sister that a gentleman had approached her and said that the people at table 13, he wanted to pay for their meals, no matter what the cost, and that he wished to remain anonymous."

Ms Moeke said her whanau sat quietly after hearing the news, wondering if they could get a glimpse of the man.

"So this is a big thank you to the kind-hearted gentleman who paid for our meals. Please accept our appreciation for your kindness.

"For me, I look forward to visiting Hawke's Bay again soon. New Zealand, there are still some very good places out there."

Coffee Club duty manager Nicki van Cooten was not working on the day Ms Moeke was at the restaurant but had served the man who had paid for the meals on other occasions.

"He and his wife had been coming in for a couple of weeks. She was expecting their baby and was going into hospital to be induced.

"I think the night before he paid for the meals, he had won some money on the pokies and just wanted to pay it forward."

Ms Cooten said she was on duty the day after Ms Moeke and her whanau had been to the restaurant and again served the man and his wife.

"He mentioned it to me and I said that was really lovely. It's not very often someone does that these days. I've been here for 12 months and I've never seen that before."

The gesture had been the talking point for staff at the restaurant for the past week.

"I know from chatting to him, he already had enough on his plate with his own family, yet what he did was tremendous."

Do you know who this mystery man is? e-mail


- Hawkes Bay Today

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