SAN DIEGO – The students at Hoover High School rolled out a great big surprise for the woman who helps keep them fed.
Food service worker Debra Davis received a car refurbished by students in the school’s auto body technician program.
She almost couldn’t contain herself as the shiny white Mazda wrapped with a bright red bow rolled out before her.
Once in the driver's seat, Davis wasn't quite sure what to do.
"I'm not used to a new car, ya'll," she said. "What do I do?"
Her old ride was a 1976 Chevy Malibu. Davis drove it to and from Hoover High school for years.
While her job title says food service worker, she serves a bigger role.
"I feed the kids, I prepare the food, I talk to them, I stop them from fighting," Davis said. "They don't cuss. They have to respect, and they call me 'Aunt Debbie.'"
"Debbie comes to campus every single day with a smile on her face, ready to take on the day and serve our students," Hoover Principal James Babineau said. "So, to see this gift that so many people have been a part of in making it happen is a wonderful thing."
In addition to her job at the school, Davis also drives across San Diego County to serve meals to homeless people and volunteer at nursing homes.
Because of her volunteer work, the charities Recycled Rides and Kids for Peace, along with State Farm, got together to give her a stolen vehicle that had been recovered and then refurbished.
The students in the auto shop program repaired the dents and dings.
"Thank you all so much, thank you all so much," said Debra. "I'm looking for my reward in heaven and you all gave me a little bit here on earth."