Oftentimes, it’s the gesture that matters most.
Zaza Pachulia has seen the images on social media and TV. Doctors and nurses and other healthcare workers laboring through fatigue, trying to stem the tide of a virus that has killed nearly 13,000 in America and more than 80,000 worldwide.
The former Warriors center, now a team consultant, felt the urge do something. Didn’t have to be massive. Just enough to show he cared. That somebody cared.
So, Pachulia decided to dig into his pocket and feed those too busy to eat. He arranged for a hot lunch to be served ln Tuesday to more than 70 San Francisco healthcare workers.
“We all have to help each other, wherever we can,” Pachulia said over the phone. “It doesn’t matter how much, or what, you do. It’s about making each person feel like you’re thinking about them and appreciate what they do.”
In accordance with social-distancing measures in effect throughout California, Pachulia did not make a personal appearance. Though he is a native of the Republic of Georgia, he has settled his family in the Bay Area.
His contribution brought aid and comfort beyond those that enjoyed the food that was delivered around noon by a Mexican restaurant located in the East Bay.
“So many small businesses and middle-size businesses are hurting right now,” Pachulia said. “Some have closed and shut down. They have a lot of challenges. Hopefully a big order can help them a little bit, give them a breather for now.”
As a coincidence, Pachulia’s gesture came on World Health Day.
“When you think about it, these are the people that are working the hardest and sacrificing their health and time,” he said. “I’ve seen pictures . . . those doctors and nurses are in these hospitals 24/7, sleeping at their desks whenever they get a minute. They’re trying to get a second of rest with patients coming nonstop.
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“It’s just lunch, probably not a big deal. The biggest thing for me is to send a message that we appreciate their sacrifice. They are the real heroes. They’re saving lives. They’re working hard, sacrificing family time, their health, their lives.”
The gesture itself is magnanimous. The spirit, however, is priceless.