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Couple donates stimulus check to Bravo Espresso

ROCHESTER, Minn. (KTTC) -- It was a normal day for Andrew Meissner when a regular customer of his of over nine years, Emma Behnken asked if the store took donations. Not thinking anything of it, Meissner said yes.

Behnken went on her way to work and then return an hour later. She slid a check face down on the counter, told Meissner it was for him, and went on her way. The check was for $600 and Meissner couldn't believe it.

Cory and Emma Behnken both work downtown and noticed the thinning crowds whenever they would go in to the office instead of working from home. With two kids at home and being able to keep their jobs during the pandemic, they felt it was the right thing to do for helping out a small business in need.

Citing how they had known Meissner for years, they knew he would be the one they'd donate to. After the check was dropped off, they all were able to connect about the donation even though the Behnken's weren't seeking a thank you.

"He just shared how challenging it's been this year and how much this is gonna help," said Cory Behnken. "It meant a lot to us and we know how great of a person he is so it didn't matter on our end whether he thanked us or not. We didn't look for any specific thank you, we just wanted to help in any way we could and thought this could be the perfect opportunity to do that."

Meissner said that the money will help keep the lights on and ensure the shop's three employees continue to go home with a paycheck.

Meissner is very thankful but he says he still is trying to wrap his head around the generous gift.

"I'm still kind of at a loss for words for it," Meissner said. "Definitely, very very grateful. If I could do anything for them or their family, they know that I would. That's kind of where I'm at right now. Definitely at a loss for words, though."

Meissner also went on to say that although business with takeout has remained, the reopening of businesses on Monday for in-person dining is surely going to help as well.

Zach Fuller

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