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Man, his family make and deliver 5,000 sandwiches to thank hospital staff

Photo of a hospital sign. (Provided Photo)

(CNN) — An Ohio man, his family and a few Subway employees worked 12 hours to make and deliver 5,000 sandwiches as a “thank you” to University Hospital staff in Cleveland during the coronavirus pandemic.

On March 24, a day after Gov. Mike DeWine’s stay-at-home order was enacted, David Coury was in the hospital. The 54-year-old needed surgery to remove cancer from his tongue.

“The day I was in there was the height of fear, so to speak, or the unknown of what was going on,” Coury told CNN.

“I just looked around, and it was amazing to me to see all of these people going about their business — carefully — but still they were taking care of everybody else, including me,” he said. “It just moved me.”

Coury’s brother-in-law, Ghazi Faddoul, owns multiple Subway franchises in Northeast Ohio. Because of the coronavirus outbreak, one of his stores has closed and the others are operating with extremely shortened schedules, some selling less than $50 a day.

“You get to the other side of cancer as well as I did, it was sort of easy,” he said. “He needed help.”

The purchase of the 5,000 sandwiches would benefit Faddoul as well as hospital workers.

On Monday night, Faddoul opened five stores for a few employees and Coury’s family to come in. They worked from 10 p.m. until 10 a.m. before delivering Tuesday.

“The folks at University Hospitals, the staff members, were all so appreciative,” he said. “They truly are amazing.”

The president and scientific director of the UH Seidman Cancer Center, Dr. Theodoros N. Teknos, also happens to be Coury’s physician.

“The kindness that David showed to our team is really remarkable,” he told CNN in a statement. “It’s important that our community rallies together and supports one another during these unprecedented times.”

Coury’s cancer was removed successfully, his recovery went well, and he needs no further treatments.

“If I didn’t have cancer, by the way, I’d have done the same thing,” Coury said.

Through separate donations, Faddoul’s Subway locations provided more than 500 meals to nursing homes and homeless shelters. They expect to deliver another 1,000 meals to the hospital next week.