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Construction Crew Surprises Friendly Neighbor with Packers Tickets

Lifestyle | By  | 
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abcnews.go.com

abcnews.go.com

Construction crews rarely make friends where they work; something about the loud noises seems to turn people off. But one Wisconsin construction crew recently found a friend and a fan in Rich Nowakowski, and they decided to pay him back with a special gift, tickets to a Green Bay Packers game.

Rich suffered a stroke in 2012 and now he struggles to string words together. He spends most of his days on his front porch, and recently he’s taken a liking to the construction crew building an apartment complex across the street from his house.

He says “hi” to all the workers every day and cheers them on while they work. “He can’t really say what he wants to say and can’t really come up with the words, but he can still say ‘beautiful,’ ‘good job’ and ‘hey, hey, hey,'” explains Rich’s wife, Patricia.

The workers affectionately call Rich “Boss,” and recently decided to pool their money together to give Rich a special present to thank him for his kindness and support.

“One day I got a phone call from them and they said they really wanted to surprise him with Packers tickets, $400 in cash and some Packers gear,” Patricia explains.

“On their lunch hour, they all gathered together and walked across the street. I had 30 of these guys on my front lawn, and he just sat here and went, ‘Wow, wow, wow.'”

Patricia says that Rich, like a lot of stroke victims, can get depressed about his condition, but that the gift lifted his spirits. “He does the most with what he has, but this just made the world for him,” she said.

“When we’re building projects, neighbors don’t like us. We’re changing their neighborhood,” said Andy Benoy, who owns the construction company. “We haven’t had anything like this, an experience like this, when people love you coming in there. It’s really refreshing.”

Thanks to the crew, Rich and his son, Ryan, attended Sunday’s Packers game against the Texans. “He was tickled pink,” said Ryan. “We had an excellent time. For them to take a liking to him is very special.”

The construction crew is now finished with its work on the apartment building, but they didn’t leave without giving a wonderful farewell gift to their new friend.

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