Couple surprises San Benito woman who helped with money, food in time of need
A couple facing financial hardship gets the kind of help they say they'll never forget.
The Gonzalez family wants a fellow church member, who opened her home up to them and provided food and money, to know just how much they appreciate the selfless kindness.
They turned to Pronto insurance and Action 4 news to helps Pay it 4Ward.
Lucia and Cristel Gonzalez surprise Noemi Cortez at her San Benito apartment.
She believes they are there for an early birthday celebration.
Little does the birthday girl know, Action 4 news is standing by for the big surprise.
But it's not for her birthday, rather to reward her selfless acts of kindness.
Noemi: Oh my god!
Ryan: Noemi, I'm Ryan Wolf with Action 4 News. Happy birthday.
Noemi: Oh my gosh.
Ryan: You know that we're not really here for your birthday, right?
Noemi: No. I didn't know.
Ryan: Do you have any idea why we're here?
Noemi: No, I don't.
Ryan: I'm here because Cristel and Lucia think the absolute world of you.
Cristel: You were there for me when I couldn't drive... for my family. I just want to show appreciation for everything you've done for me.
Lucia: Remember you gave us half your food... When we didn't have anything? And all those other stuff that you've given me. Remember that vacuum cleaner? And the microwave? And the money when I didn't have gas? It's what you gave me, remember? Here's $400 from Action 4 News and Pronto Insurance. This is to Pay it 4Ward.
Noemi: Oh my gosh!
Ryan: What does this moment mean to you right now?
Noemi: I praise my God. I'm so surprised. I know that this is the Lord's doing and I can't believe this is happening right now.
Noemi is stunned.
"It just comes from the heart," she said. "He put it in me to do this and look at what he's done for me now."
But throughout the surprise, she utters the words that have made everyone outside her apartment realize why she's the deserving recipient.
"I do for them what they would do for me," she said.
Domingo Reyna, with Pronto Insurance, shares with Noemi how the money works.
"We're proud to present this $400 on the Pronto pre-paid card MasterCard so that you can use that anywhere you want," he explained. "That's for you. You deserve it."
Ryan: How will this money help out?
Noemi: To get back on track. To get me back on track. I just moved in here and it was a hard move.
Lucia and Cristel call the surprise a huge success and something they'll cherish forever.
"It means a whole lot to reward somebody who's helped us out and be able to pay them back," Cristel said. "We thank you."
"Pay it 4Ward means a lot to me because I didn't have another way to let her know just how much she means to me," Lucia said.