Quick-thinking NJ waitress saved elderly man from this car fire
Angela Avenarius may have some good karma saved up.
Friday, she was in Atlantic City at a poker tournament. But just three days earlier, Avenarius's presence proved good luck for 86-year-old Charlie Flowers — one of her favorite regular customers at the Bridgeton Family Diner.
Someone mentioned there was smoke out in the parking lot, she said. She immediately recognized the car as Flowers'
"At first, I thought maybe his car was overhearing. He had shut his engine off," Avenarius said. But the smoke wasn't getting any better, and it had a funny smell."
Avenarius told Flowers she thought he should get out of the car. He didn't seem concerned at first, she said, but the smoke and smell got worse.
Avenarius helped Flowers out and the vehicle burst into flames.
Everyone was a bit shocked, Avenarius said. But her customer, cool and collected, didn't seem fazed: "He just moseyed on in."
Avenarius said she called the fire department and tried to keep customers away from the windows. Another waitress moved a car that was next to Flowers'. The fire raged, but firefighters were able to get it out quickly, she said.
Flowers, reached at his home Friday, said he didn't know what the big deal was: "My car caught fire? So what?"
But when told an article discussing the incident would spotlight Avenarius' help, his tone changed.
"Anything for Angie," he said. "They're nice people there. Angie and several of the others."