by: Jason Kelly, WFTV.com Updated:
ORLANDO, Fla. - Natural disasters often cause death and destruction, but the looming threat of Hurricane Irma has brought out the best in some Central Florida residents.
Customers have gone from store to store searching for plywood, drinking water, gas cans and generators, and many have left empty-handed.
Managers at the Lowe's store at South Semoran Boulevard and Lake Margaret Drive near Orlando's Conway neighborhood said they received a surprise shipment of 216 generators at about 7 a.m. Thursday. All were sold within two hours.
Pam Brekke, who traveled almost 30 miles from her Sanford home to the Orlando store, was next in line to purchase a generator when she watched workers load the final unit onto a cart for the customer who was standing before her in line.
Scroll down to keep reading and watch.
- Northwest smoke and ash: How long is the smoke expected to stay in Seattle?
- PHOTOS: Ash falls across Western Washington
- Q & A: What to know about ash falling in Western Washington
- Will the ash hurt my car?
- VIDEO: Seattle Smoke & Ash
Brekke said she spent days staring at empty store shelves, looking for generators.
"My father's on oxygen, and I'm worried about this storm," she said while wiping tears from her eyes.
Customer Ramon Santiago approached Brekke and gave her the generator he was going to buy without knowing why she was in tears.
"She need the generator," said Santiago, whose first language isn't English. "It's OK. No worry for them."
The two embraced and Santiago continued shopping.
"I'm very overwhelmed by that man," a tearful Brekke said. "That gentleman was a great gentleman right there. God will bless that man."
Brekke said it's encouraging to see people help one another during such a stressful time.
Store managers said they're unsure if they'll receive another shipment of generators since each store in the state needs more.
© 2017 Cox Media Group.
Lowe's customer gives last generator to fellow shopper ahead of Hurricane Irma
Pastor protects wife, daughters, shoots home invader
Thanksgiving 2017: The best and worst times to drive and fly this Thanksgiving
Documents: Montana congressman misled investigators after assaulting reporter
Teen who biked 13 miles to work given car as present by coworkers