Nimmer Heating of Milwaukee, Wisconsin selected Vicente Alvarez as their 2016 Bryant Community Heroes winner. Vicente went out of his way to help a complete stranger who had fallen on ice, and went unnoticed by many others while she laid there. Vicente couldn’t drive by without helping. He stopped, offered her his coat to keep her warm, called 911, and even returned her dogs to her home during the frigid day. Not only that, he held Heather’s hand and comforted her while she was in pain. Vicente is an everyday Hero who went above and beyond and we’re proud to call him a Bryant Community Hero!
“I had my own Good Samaritan, my own good neighbor and hero on December 30, 2015, when Vicente Alvarez stopped the car he was driving and got out to help me. I had fallen hard on the ice while walking my dogs. I could not get up because of the terrible pain. So, in the cold, on the ice, I laid as I had fallen, waiting for someone to drive by and care enough to stop. My neighborhood is not Vicente’s. My first language is not Vicente’s. Under normal circumstances, our paths would not even cross. But, having had a terrible fall, himself, years ago, Vicente now owns a cleaning company and, on that morning, was driving his employees to the homes in which they work. He stopped the car and got out. He tried to help me up but I could not even sit up. He asked to call 911 but I first needed my dogs to get out of the cold as they had been standing outside for awhile. I asked Vicente to return my dogs to my house. He then took my keys and walked my dogs back to my house, locked my door and returned to me with the keys. He took off his coat and gathered the coats of his employees who stood in the cold. With his coat and the others, he covered me up and tried to keep me comfortable. He called 911 for me. Vicente, coatless in the cold, knelt down and held my hand. I was in such horrific pain, I needed the support of a real person. He was that real person to me. He talked to me about the fall that he had had, that ended a chapter in his life. After recovering from his fall, he started his cleaning company. He would not be stopped from being a productive person, despite permanent damage to his foot. He was not competing with me; he was identifying with my suffering. Vicente is my hero because he inconvenienced himself and even his own workers to step into my pain and brokenness and help me out. I learned over the next days that I had fractured my pelvis and my wrist. Recovery was slow; physical therapy was a pain worth forgetting. However, I hope never to forget my winter hero, Vicente Alverez.
I would love to see Bryant Community Hero program provide a furnace to Vicente. It would be a beautiful gift of warmth for one who was willing to become cold on my behalf. While I recognize that Vicente’s act was individual and behind the scenes, with no awards or fanfare, he did the sacrificial thing, even across cultural lines. This was not a program. It was his life that he put on hold for me. God bless that man and God bless you as you choose to honor a hero. Thank you.”