Massachusetts Cashier Pays Veteran’s Grocery Bill As a Token of Appreciation

by Jennifer Shea

A cashier in Oxford, Massachusetts decided to chip in when an unnamed veteran came up short at the local market.

Briar Poirier has worked at the Market Basket in Oxford for the past eight years. And he is a sunny presence at the grocery store, where patrons say he remembers who they are and asks how they’re doing.

“[Poirier] asks me about my day. He lightens my mood. He jokes with me a little bit, makes my day 100% better,” emergency room nurse Renee Falcioni told Boston CBS affiliate WBZ.

Massachusetts Cashier Picks Up Part of Veteran’s Grocery Bill

Poirier described himself to WBZ as an autistic person who loves music, knowledge, video gaming and compassion. So he’s shown a lot of the latter in his day-to-day interactions with customers, including Falcioni.

It was Falcioni who spread the story on social media of how Poirier covered the difference between what a local veteran had with him and what his purchases cost.

“I was an aisle ahead of Briar, and he was cashing out an elderly man who happened to be a veteran,” Falcioni recounted. “And the veteran was short paying for his grocery bill, and without hesitation, Briar took out his wallet and said, ‘I’ve got this.’”

Poirier could tell the man had served in the military from what he was wearing. The Massachusetts veteran had maxed out a $25 Market Basket gift card and owed $3 more. Then Poirier decided to do something to thank the veteran for his service.

“The gentleman had a couple basic necessities and looked like he was a little down on his luck, and the man fought for our country, fought for our freedoms, our rights,” Poirier said. “It’s the least I could do for him.”

Poirier Urges People to Pay It Forward

That small act of kindness apparently made the veteran’s day, according to Falcioni.

“I turned around and saw the veteran,” she told WBZ. “His eyes just light up. And he shook his hand, and he said thank you and he had a big smile from ear to ear.”

Falcioni’s version of events quickly made the rounds on social media. And she said people who know Poirier from Market Basket also chimed in with stories of their own.

“From what I’ve read on social media, it’s not the first time that he’s done this,” she said. “And he’s helped so many people.”

As for Poirier, he just wishes people would draw inspiration from that story and do something kind for someone else.

“I’m hoping more people can help each other in times of need, whether you be a stranger or a friend, just to make people’s day better,” he said.