We meet cashiers almost every day. However, meeting one who has the power to make your day like Alvin Easter can, that’s a different story.
Easter has been working at the Walgreens on Bee Cave Road since about the time it opened several years ago and, according to a countless number of people online, he has been impacting customers ever since.
When news broke out that his mother, Doris, passed away on June 24, it wasn’t long before the Walgreen’s community decided to band together to repay him for all his kind words and advice over the years.
On June 19, Allen Gilmer of West Lake Hills decided to start a conversation about Easter on the neighborhood social network Nextdoor.com, and it spurred an outpouring of appreciation. Dozens upon dozens of people thanked Easter for being a positive influence in their lives, and it wasn’t long before someone decided to start a GoFundMe account to help raise funds to help relieve some of the financial burdens of dealing with the loss of a loved one.
A fellow neighbor named Cord Shiflet started the fundraiser and within 18 days it had already received more than $10,000 in donations.
“I was always enamored with how kind he was when I checked out,” said Shiflet. “You’d just watch his interactions with customers and realize he’s the kind of guy who wants to make you be a better person.”
He said Easter began working as a cashier at Walgreen’s after retiring from IBM as a way to earn extra income to help out with the medical bills of his wife’s mother and twin sister.
Shiflet said while he expected the GoFundMe page to garner a lot of attention due to Easter's selflessness and kindness, he was shocked by the amount of money that ended up coming in. He said that a few singular donations even surpassed $1,000.
Once all the donations came in, Shiflet said he didn't think Easter was the type of guy who would expect a big reveal. So he met Easter at Walgreen’s after his shift a few days ago, handed him an envelope with the cash inside and the two just went along on their way.
“He was shocked," Shiflet said. "He had no idea what was going on.”
Since his mother’s passing, Easter thanked his community and friends on Facebook.
“Thank you all for your expressions of support,” he wrote in a public post. “The family is doing well. We are very thankful to have had so many years with her, and we are also grateful to have all of our friends, like you, in our lives.”
Shiflet shared some of the following comments community members gave along with their donations:
- Alvin, You are a pleasure to see and talk even if it's for a short time a few days a week. You bring light to my day and help me get through the tough days. Thank you for all that you have done for me and my family. All the words of advice and sincere thoughtfulness during the tough times and happy times are so appreciated. We love you Alvin Easter.
- It seems like every time I talk to you, I am reminded of the things that really matter. Your mother must have been a remarkable woman to raise a son like you. Thank you for your kindness and wisdom.
- Alvin, I live in Tarrytown and drive to Westlake just to see you. Your momma must have been a wonderful woman to have raised you. The echoes of your kind words ARE truly endless. Thank you for all you do for the community and I hope you know how much we treasure you.
- Alvin, you are unlike anyone we know. As your former coworker, I want to thank you for everything you have taught me about compassion and life. I don’t know what I would have done without your daily guidance over 16 months of getting to know and learn from you. Thank you for always being that ray of sunshine that could turn the bad days into smiles. Even though I no longer see you as much as I used to, you still have a huge impact on my life and also my mom’s life. You have taught us what it truly means to treat others how you want to be treated. We love you Alvin.
“He just makes you feel good,” added Shiflet. “If you met him, you’d understand.”