How one couple and a bakery came to the aid of those stranded on I-95

As miles of traffic got stuck on I-95 for more than a day because of snow and ice, one of the biggest problems for drivers who were stranded was a lack of food.


As miles of traffic got stuck on Interstate 95 for more than a day because of snow and ice, one of the biggest problems for drivers who were stranded was a lack of food. Many people were stuck in their cars for hours on end without anything to eat.


Thanks to two people from Maryland who were stuck in the mess and a Baltimore bakery helped fix the problem.

Casey Holihan and her husband, John Noe, from Ellicott City, were hungry, exhausted and growing more terrified by the minute. The couple will remember this road trip for a long time. Not only because they got stuck in a snowstorm, but because they were able to help so many people when they felt so helpless.

"It was definitely a very scary situation and we had no idea how long we would be there for," Noe said.

"We went to bed that night in the car because we just couldn't go anywhere, we were exhausted from driving all day and being so stressed," Holihan said.

They didn't move for more than 16 hours. Holihan said she could hear kids in nearby cars crying. Then she noticed a bakery truck on the highway in front of them and got an idea.

"(On) kind of on a whim, I just called the customer service line of Schmidt's Bread. I kind of begged them to open the back of the truck and just give us a couple loaves of bread so we could share with the people around us," Holihan said.

Schmidt Baking Co. is part of H&S Bakery, which has been in Baltimore for 70 years. Owner Chuck Paterakis called Holihan, and then, the truck's driver, Ron, opened the back of the truck and they all passed out loaves of bread down a two-mile stretch of the icy highway.

"We just kept giving it out until we couldn't walk anymore because it was so freezing," Holihan said. "It felt incredible just hearing people say thank you and hearing people just so relieved to finally have food in their car, food in their system and in their kids' system. It was a really incredible feeling."

It was an incredible feeling for Paterakis as well. He never imagined he'd be able to help feed stranded drivers in Virginia, all the way from Baltimore.

"I'm so pleased that the people who were hungry, that hadn't eaten for the past 24 hours, had a chance, even if it was bread, had the chance to fill their stomachs up. It was very gratifying to me. It was something I will always remember," Paterakis said.

"This company is incredible. This bread truck was on the way to being delivered. The company definitely could have made a profit off the bread but instead chose to help the people around them," Holihan said, "That is just so incredible that someone chose humanity over profit, especially in a situation that people were so desperate."

The couple still had a few more hours in the car heading to North Carolina. They're saying goodbye to family before Noe is stationed with the Air Force in Germany.