Merced restaurant offers free breakfast for first responders, anyone 65 and older

MERCED, Calif. (KFSN) -- A Merced restaurant owner is going above and beyond for his customers and staff during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Ray Mercado owns the H&W Drive-In and the Bar-B-Q Pit. He has provided free breakfast to first responders and people age 65 and older since the shelter-in-place began.

Staff members wearing masks and gloves bring the food out to customers' cars to help ensure their safety.

The Bar-B-Q Pit is also open for takeout from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m., with regular menu items available as well as family packs.

Employees say they're thankful for the opportunity to serve the community -- and to keep their jobs.

"We're appreciative of our boss, our customers, for all the support from everybody," said Elizabeth Thomas. "We appreciate everyone coming back. And the most part is him (Mercado). We appreciate our boss, still having our jobs and being able to help the people in the community."

A local resident wrote on Facebook praising Mercado late last month. The post has been shared more than 1,700 times and filled with comments from people expressing their gratitude.
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