Burt Brothers Tire and Service is a leading, family-owned tire seller and auto repair provider with 10 shops along Utah's Wasatch Front. The company recently donated $5,000 to help a competitor, Lopez Tires of Salt Lake City, after the owner and his son were brutally beaten.
On November 27, Jose Lopez and his son, Luis, had just opened their tire shop for the day when a homeless man walked onto their property. He began beating 18-year-old Luis with a metal pipe, resulting in injuries so severe that he had to be hospitalized for a week and get surgery to replace his shattered cheekbone with a metal plate. The perpetrator said that his motive was to "kill a Mexican."
When Jose tried to protect his son, he was also beaten and had to get stitches on his back. Jose had to close the tire business, his family's primary source of income, for a week while he and his son recovered from their injuries.
After learning about the tragedy from the local news, Burt Brothers tire shop owners, Ron and Wendel Burt, decided to deliver a $5,000 check to the Lopez family.
"If we shut our tire business down for a week, we'd really be hurting, so we can imagine what it's like for the Lopez family," said Wendel Burt. "My brother and I could really feel for them, and in the spirit of wanting to help a peer in our industry, we knew this was the right thing to do."
Wendel deflected thanks for the donation, crediting Burt Brothers' employees and customers for making it possible.
"We have been blessed with a great team and great customers. Without them, we couldn't afford to do something like this," said Wendel.
Wendel said that he and his brother look forward to continuing their relationship with the Lopez family.
"We're staying in touch with the family and hope to make some lifelong friends from this experience," said Wendel.
This story first appeared on digitaljournal.com