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Airport Custodian Goes ‘Above and Beyond’ to Help a Passenger

Anthony Wheeler Anthony Wheeler, a lead cleaning technician at Performance Plus at South Bend International Airport in South Bend, Indiana, goes out of his way to help others. Image courtesy of Performance Plus

Helping a stranded passenger with instructions is one thing but staying with him and offering to take him home is going above and beyond. Especially, during work hours. 

Anthony Wheeler, a lead cleaning technician with Performance Plus at South Bend International Airport in South Bend, Indiana, did just that for an elderly passenger who was waiting on a bus that never came. 

The man, in his eighties, insisted that Miller Transportation had a bus route to Indianapolis, and that he took it from the airport every year. 

Wheeler took the passenger to the airport information desk where Brian Wells, Information and Communications center agent, confirmed that the bus hadn’t run there since 2019—probably the last time the man rode it before the pandemic. 

“Anthony stayed with him the entire time to make sure he was okay,” Wells recalled. “He even offered to take him home. The passenger was very grateful and Anthony was truly a help to him; the man was distraught and Anthony went above and beyond.”

Wheeler took the man home on his lunch break and returned to work that day.

“I just wanted to help him out because I just like helping people out,” Wheeler said. 

A generous spirit

Tina Watson, Performance Plus site operations manager and Wheeler’s supervisor, said she was “shocked, but not shocked” when she received an email about Wheeler’s generosity from Wells. “He is a great worker. He is a team player. He’ll get in and help as much as he can, stay over if he has to, come in early,” Watson said.

Watson has supervised Wheeler since he was hired last October and knew him almost two years prior. “He goes out of his way, and he will do anything for anybody, especially elderly people,” she said. 

Performance Plus is a family-owned commercial cleaning company with more than 100 years of experience. It provides custodial services to medical, airport, and educational facilities in Indiana and Southwest Michigan.

Watson supervises 12 Performance Plus employees and said they often go beyond their cleaning duties, like Wheeler did, to help passengers with wheelchair assistance or to call an Uber for them. “We make sure we do as much as we can for them,” she said.

Wheeler said he loves his job because he can work at his own pace. He added that the pandemic has not affected his work since joining Performance Plus. “The only challenge is getting the right employees to help keep it up,” he said.

Wheeler was offered a free meal card from the airport for his generosity. 

           
Posted On October 1, 2021

Rocio Villaseñor

Editorial Intern at Cleaning & Maintenance Management

Rocio Villaseñor is a former editorial intern at Cleaning & Maintenance Management. She has a handful of internship and freelance experiences from industries such as health, business, politics, education, and media. Villaseñor holds a Master’s degree in Public Affairs Journalism from Columbia College Chicago.

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