Mystery Diner Pays $485 Lunch Bill For Students With Autism & Their Teachers

A group of 25 elementary school students and 21 staffers in New Jersey received a special Teacher Appreciation Week gift from an anonymous customer who volunteered to pay for the group’s entire bill at a Tex-Mex restaurant.

The group students with autism, along with their teachers and speech therapists were enjoying their outing to Jose Tejas Restaurant in Woodbridge, NJ, last week when they got the surprise.

“At the end of our meal, the manager came over and told us our entire $485 bill was paid for by a fellow patron, and she chooses to remain anonymous because she told the manager she has a grandchild with special needs,” one teacher tells “She wanted to show her appreciation to us on Teacher Appreciation Day.”

The students had brought their own money to pay for the lunch, which was the conclusion of an extended lesson on Cinco de Mayo. But with some benefactor choosing to foot the bill, the teachers told the kids to save the money for another outing.

While only the restaurant knows who the generous customer was, the teachers are hoping that the person(s) will see news items about the gift and know that it was appreciated. The students have even made a card that will be held at the restaurant in case the customer comes back.

“We’d like to thank her and give her a hug and let her know how much it meant,” says the teacher.

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