COLONIE, N.Y (NEWS10) — People shop at Trader Joe’s for groceries, but a local woman stopped by the store on Wolf Road and found a very special friend at just the right time.

Kathy Donald has had a tough year, not just because of this pandemic, but because she lost her husband L.H. Donald just four days before Christmas.

The two were together more than 50 years. “I think he was the best man in the world — kind, a hard worker — he took care of his family.”

Kathy's husband Donald
Kathy and her husband Donald.

Kathy was lost without her husband and spent months at home struggling with her sadness. Then her daughter Sheryl took her to Trader Joe’s to get her out of the house and take her mind off her grief. That’s when something amazing happened. A worker named Charles Perry approached Kathy and asked how she was doing?

“I just burst into tears,” Kathy said. When Charles saw this he asked Kathy what was wrong? “I told him then about my husband dying and that I was very sad.”

Charles immediately ran and got Kathy tissues for her tears and a bottle of water, but he was just getting started.

As Sheryl remembers it, “All of the sudden Charles runs off and next thing you know he’s giving my mom a bouquet of flowers.’

Charles rushed to get Kathy flowers after he heard that Donald had passed.

As amazing as that sounds, that’s not the most impressive thing Charles Perry did that day.

Sheryl recounts, “He then stood and talk to my mom for 45 minutes straight about my dad, making sure she was okay.”

Kathy says that kindness was just amazing. “He is such a nice young man. Him taking time that way. Just incredibly kind. I treat him now like my son.”

As for Charles, he said it was just a gesture any one of us should do. “This is a time when people need each other and to see someone like that, so upset, it was just a way of listening and connecting.”

Kathy is getting out of the house much more and her favorite stop is, of course, Trader Joe’s. Giving a hug to her favorite employee.