Coca-Cola Consolidated Response Team Manager Tony Nunley heard about a man in his community losing his home in a fire when he was on the phone with his mom on the weekend of Jan. 22. The Response Team typically helps teammates recover from natural disasters, but after some quick digging, Nunley learned the man was Barry Witt, who works at a Roanoke, Va.-area Food Lion, a long-time customer of Consolidated.

This connection and our Purpose to serve others resulted in the Response Team assisting Witt. Nunley reached out to Witt to confirm that it was him who had suffered the loss, and within a week the Response Team got the go-ahead to proceed. Nunley put out a call for anyone willing to help and Consolidated teammates, Food Lion associates, neighbors, and other community members stepped up to help clean out Witt’s home.

Volunteers gutted the house, allowing the contractor to come in and start the next steps.

“The overwhelming response from the local team was second to none,” added Nunley. “It was just really good that they stepped up to the plate.”

“They came in and emptied the house – what was trash they threw in the trash, what was valuable they brought by for my wife,” said Witt. “They did in three days what would’ve taken other people at least two months.”

And now, Barry and his wife, Sandi, and two children, Josh and Kayla, will be able to move back into their house much more quickly than they would have if it weren’t for Consolidated’s Response Team.

“We were told it would be nine months to a year to inspect it, but because of the work that was done here by Coca-Cola Consolidated and the contractors, they feel very confident we’ll be back in the house sooner,” said Witt.

Because of the Response Team’s efforts, and the number of teammate volunteers, the Witt family is one step closer to getting their home back.

The Response Team’s calling to serve others was not only appreciated by Barry and his family. Shannon Durham manages the Food Lion account for Consolidated and she received many notes of appreciation from the Food Lion team for treating one of their associates like a Consolidated teammate.

“What a tremendous effort to serve a member of the community,” said Shannon Durham, Vice President of Customer Management. “I’m proud to work for a company that serves our Purpose at this level.”

“Very few companies, if any others, do this kind of thing,” added Witt. “It really says a lot about Coke Consolidated and their character, from the top down. They worked as a true team. You could just tell they were excited to do what they did, and you could tell that they loved each other and care for each other – and that they cared for us by helping us through this.”

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