Pastor: Waffle House employees’ reaction ‘amazing’ after surprise big tip

Published: Monday, December 25, 2017 @ 10:46 PM
Updated: Tuesday, December 26, 2017 @ 5:30 PM

Wapakoneta Waffle House Employees Get a Christmas Surprise

UPDATE @ 5:30 p.m.

Five workers at the Wapakoneta Waffle House got a big surprise from a Celina church on Christmas Eve.

The Grand Lake United Methodist Church’s lead pastor, the Rev. Mick Whistler, had each family save $1 a week during advent. During the 11 p.m. service Sunday for Christmas Eve, he surprised the congregation by telling them they’d be taking the money collected — $3,577, almost all in $1 bills — to the nearest restaurant open for Christmas. That was the Waffle House in Wapakoneta.

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“At that point, the whole congregation started clapping and everyone was excited. We were live streaming that as well, so we had folks who were home in their pajamas watching that. They got up, got dressed and got to Waffle House before we did,” he said.

The reaction of the five women workers at Waffle House “was amazing,” he said.

Church members give big 'tip' to Waffle House servers

“One lady was like, ‘Are you kidding me?’ A couple folks just broke down in tears. One girl just kind of walked away crying,” he said.

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Whistler said the point was to show how saving $1 for five weeks had hardly any affect on individual families, but together as a church they were able to make a huge difference.


Five women who work at an area Waffle House received a touching Christmas surprise from Grand Lake United Methodist Church.

Lead pastor of the church in Celina, the Rev. Mick Whistler, challenged church members to set aside $1 each week of advent, with each family bringing five $1 bills to the Christmas Eve service.

At the end of the service, Whistler took off his minister’s robes and revealed he was wearing a red server’s apron. He announced the church raised more than $3,500 and that they were going to take it to the Waffle House in Wapakoneta, where servers were unable to be home with their families.

Despite the snow and poor road conditions, church member Barb Vorhees said between 60 and 70 church members joined the caravan to the restaurant.

The five workers were amazed by the large envelope stuffed with $1 bills. “They were all very touched by it,” she said.

“The cool thing about it was none of us knew about it. It was a surprise to us, too.”

Got a tip? Call our monitored 24-hour line, 937-259-2237, or send it to

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Fog this morning; showers, storms to return today

Published: Wednesday, June 20, 2018 @ 4:15 AM


  • Few evening showers and storms today
  • Chances for rain/storms continues into weekend
  • Little relief from the heat/humidity

>> LIVE Doppler 7 Interactive HD Radar


Today: Some areas could wake up to some fog this morning, said Storm Center 7 Meteorologist Brett Collar. The chance for showers and storms returns today, with the best chances later this afternoon and evening. While we’re not anticipating this rain to be as widespread as yesterday, most areas will stand a decent chance to see rain today. Some heavy downpours will be possible with these showers and storms. Highs today will be in the lower to mid 80s.

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Tonight: Any showers and storms that remain this evening should fade away past sunset. Some fog is possible again overnight with temperatures dropping into the mid-60s.

Thursday: The chance for a few showers and storms returns. Highs will be near 80 degrees.

Friday: The best chance for rain moves in. Showers and storms are expected with highs in the lower 80s.

Saturday: More showers and storms are likely at times, though it won’t be an all-day rain event. Highs to start the weekend will be in the upper 70s to lower 80s. 

>> Cloudy with a chance of podcast

Sunday: More dry time is expected, but there’s still a chance for showers and storms. Highs will be in the lower 80s.

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Woman, 87, killed in fatal wrong-way downtown Dayton crash

Published: Tuesday, June 19, 2018 @ 9:20 AM
Updated: Wednesday, June 20, 2018 @ 3:46 AM

A driver is reportedly trapped inside their vehicle following a crash in downtown Dayton on West Fifth Street Tuesday morning.

The victim killed in a wrong-way crash Tuesday morning in downtown Dayton was identified as 87-year-old Opal Clouse of Dayton by the Montgomery County Coroner’s Office.

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Officers were dispatched to a report of a crash with one person trapped near the intersection of West Fifth Street and South Perry Street around 9 a.m. 

According to a crash report, a red Toyota Rav driven by Adrian F. Traylor, 67, was traveling westbound in the wrong direction on West Fifth Street.  At the intersection of W. Fifth Street and S. Perry Street, Mr. Traylor crashed into Mrs. Clouse’s silver Honda, sending her vehicle into a DP&L pole.  

Marshall Gorby/Staff

Ms. Clouse was transported to Miami Valley Hospital where she was pronounced dead, the report states.

Mr. Traylor was not injured in the crash. 

Police said excessive speed doesn’t appear to be a factor, and it is not uncommon to see drivers travel the wrong way on Dayton’s one-way streets. 

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“With going the wrong way, there is no traffic device to tell you that you should be slowing down for a red light,” Lt. James Mullins said.  “I’m sure the person was driving normal speeds and had the collision.” 

The preliminary report does not show Mr. Traylor to be charged or cited in the crash, however, the crash remains under investigation. 

Marshall Gorby/Staff

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Dayton police arrest man, 19, on suspicion of murder 

Published: Wednesday, June 20, 2018 @ 1:58 AM

Photo: Montgomery County Jail
(Photo: Montgomery County Jail)

A 19-year-old man has been arrested by Dayton police on suspicion of murder, according to online jail records.

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Carlos Blanton Jr. is currently in Montgomery County Jail on charges including aggravated murder and obstructing justice. 

He was arrested at the City of Dayton Safety Building, 335 W. Third St., and is scheduled to be arraigned Wednesday afternoon in Dayton Municipal Court, jail records say.

It is not immediately known which crime Blanton’s arrest is connected to. 

We’re working to learn more and will update this page as new details become available. 

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Man hears ‘boom, boom, clack’ before tree falls on vehicle in Dayton

Published: Tuesday, June 19, 2018 @ 2:49 PM
Updated: Tuesday, June 19, 2018 @ 4:55 PM

A large tree has fallen on top of a Jeep on La Belle Street in Dayton after a batch of heavy rain moved through the area Tuesday afternoon.

Two large trees were apparently struck by lightning Tuesday afternoon as a batch of heavy rain moved through the area.

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A large tree fell on a Jeep on La Belle Street in Dayton, and across town, a branch believed to weigh 2,000 pounds landed atop a vehicle in the 100 block of Five Oaks Avenue in Dayton.

A 2,000-pound branch fell from a tree during heavy rain Tuesday, June 19, 2018, on Five Oaks Avenue in Dayton.(JIM NOELKER / STAFF)

Sidney More was headed to the store this afternoon, driving on Five Oaks Avenue.

“I stopped at the stop sign and I heard a big boom, boom clack! And then I see a big light come down and then hit this tree.

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“There was like a little fire when it hit the tree and then the tree fell,” he said. “That’s when it hit the street. It fell  hard and fast.”

More said he backed up and went back home. “I did not go to the store. I did not want to take no chances.”

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Lightning is reportedly the reason the tree on La Bell Street toppled.

Crews were working to remove the tree from the road. 

No injuries were reported in either incident.

Got a tip? Call our monitored 24-hour line, 937-259-2237, or send it to

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