Daniel Island pays it forward in response to government shutdown
Once again the Daniel Island community has lent a helping hand to those in need. Several island residents and employees recently provided free lunches to Charleston International Airport Transportation Security Administration (TSA) agents faced with financial hardships caused by the government shutdown.
One of those eager to support the TSA agents was Rene Kaminski, Daniel Island Club membership services coordinator.
“I saw a national push of other companies donating meals and wanted to do our part on a local level,” said Kaminski.
Kaminski and Nichole Orvin, operations manager at Daniel Island Real Estate, began working on a project to provide meals for approximately 80 TSA officials.
Looking for help funding their effort, Orvin reached out to Jeff Leonard, vice president of sales at Daniel Island Real Estate. Leonard agreed it was a great idea and Daniel Island Real Estate covered the costs.
Even though the shutdown ended a few days before the scheduled delivery, the group still wanted to express their gratitude. Kaminski and Orvin, along with Daniel Island Real Estate agents Rick Adams, Angela Black Drake, Sharon Cassidy, and Michele Stevens, brought TSA officers a full southern style meal on Jan. 31 that included BBQ pulled pork and mac and cheese prepared by Daniel Island Club Executive Chef Tyler Dudley and his team.
“It felt good to do something as a sign of appreciation for the TSA agents’ dedication,” said Orvin. “For 35 days without pay, these men and women showed up to work to keep our community and airlines safe. Without them there, the impact of the shutdown on our community would have been much broader felt as we are a popular tourist destination and many Charleston residents travel daily and weekly for work.”
Rick Adams said he was happy to take time out of his busy schedule to help deliver some southern comfort to the TSA agents.
“It’s been a tough time for them not having a paycheck for five weeks,” he added. “It just feels good to give back and pay it forward.”
Rachel Urso, local realtor and cofounder of Coastal Luxury Homes, also wanted to lighten the financial burden for the Charleston TSA by providing a free lunch to the hardworking agents. A week before the shutdown ended, the Daniel Island resident and her son, Gregory, headed to the airport with 60 Chick-fil-A meals to feed the appreciative TSA crew. It was an emotional experience for Urso.
“I was moved to tears when I saw the reaction of the TSA employees after I explained how I am a World Trade Center 9/11 survivor,” she said. “I thanked them for staying alert during their unpaid time on the job. I know how important our TSA members are in providing safety in our airports and in the sky.”
She added, “When you show others that you support them, care for them, and appreciate what they are going through it’s helpful. If everyone would reach out to just one individual our nation would be a better place.”