Linda Tucker of Sabattus, at Fran’s Place in Lewiston, was given a $1000 tip by a family dining there last weekend. She immediately gifted half to her coworkers. Daryn Slover/Sun Journal Buy this Photo

Do-gooding, donuts — the last Buzz of the year could hardly be sweeter.

Up first: Just aww.

Linda Tucker, from Sabattus, has worked at Fran’s Place diner on Lisbon Street in Lewiston for almost 12 years, under three different owners, and said she loves it there: Lots of regulars, coworkers who feel like family.

She served lunch to a family of four last Saturday 15 minutes before closing. They’d been driving by and decided to stop in for the first time. The mom mentioned that she, too, was a server. She knew how hard the past year had been on everyone in restaurants.

Then she handed Tucker a $1,000 tip.

“I just kind of stood there for a minute, ‘Are you serious?'” Tucker said. “I could feel myself getting tears, she got tears. COVID aside, I said, ‘Can I give you a hug?’ She said, ‘Absolutely.'”


She gathered that the money had been raised among other waitstaff, perhaps from around the country, but the family left before Tucker got a name, or a why her?

“I was so elated — if anyone deserves it, it’s her,” said Fran’s Place owner Cassandra Gauthier. “She always goes above and beyond and takes great care of this place like it’s her own. She’s such a good mother and a good person and a great worker.”

Tucker said she didn’t think twice about what she’d do with the tip: She went home and taped $100 bills to her four coworkers’ Christmas cards, tucked lottery tickets inside, and handed them out the next day.

“The people that I work with are just awesome people. Out of all of the places I’ve ever worked, we’re a team,” Tucker said. “I just felt so much joy, being able to share that with them. It was an amazing day, an amazing end to a crappy year.”

She has two kids and some ideas how to spend the half she kept.

“I hope this lady just realizes how much that meant to us, being a small business, how much we appreciate the support,” Tucker said. “It was wonderful.”


The Holy Donut is coming to Auburn early next year. Submitted photo

And looking ahead to 2021

The Holy Donut is hoping to open next month on Minot Avenue in Auburn. The company announced its Maine potato doughnuts would be coming to the former Tim Horton’s in September.

Ryan Howe, director of business operations, said Wednesday there had been some delays in finalizing details, and some details still to go, but “we’re hoping for January sometime.”

The majority of the new staff has been trained, but it’s always looking for new hires, he said.

The new shop will be drive-thru only to start.

The Buzz was updated at 8:55 a.m. to correct the location to Minot Avenue.

Quick hits about business comings, goings and happenings. Have a Buzzable tip? Contact staff writer Kathryn Skelton at 689-2844 or

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