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Hermie Sadler serves free meals to Emporia's COVID-19 heroes

Posted at 2:08 PM, Apr 17, 2020

EMPORIA, Va. -- Former NASCAR driver Hermie Sadler is using the family business to help first responders and healthcare providers during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Sadler runs truck stops, restaurants, and convenience stores.

He's offering free lunches to those on the COVID-19 frontlines who either live or work in Emporia.

Sadler says he hopes people take him up on the offer because it also helps his employees. The restaurants have gone from each serving more than 200 meals a day to just a few.

"It keeps our people busy and we want to keep them on the payroll and keep them coming to work," Sadler said. "It also enables us to show a thank you gesture to all these people doing all these things for us that’s essential to us getting through this critical time we’re in."

First responders and healthcare workers can show up in their uniforms or show an employee badge to get the free lunch at four locations: Slip-In Food Mart, Fosho Italian Sports Grille, Hermie and Elliott Sadler's Victory Lane Restaurant, and Five Guys.

Depend on CBS 6 News and for the most complete coverage of the COVID-19 pandemic.

COVID-19 Precautions

Most patients with COVID-19 have mild to moderate symptoms. However, in a small proportion of patients, COVID-19 can lead to more severe illness, including death, particularly among those who are older or those who have chronic medical conditions.

COVID-19 spreads primarily through respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes.

Symptoms include fever, cough, and difficulty breathing. Symptoms appear within 14 days of being exposed to an infectious person.

Virginia health officials urged the following precautions:

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
  • Use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer only if soap and water are not available.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or your sleeve (not your hands) when coughing or sneezing.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.Stay home when you are sick.
  • Avoid contact with sick people.Avoid non-essential travel.