2020 Tip Challenge: Single mother gets $2,020 tip at Michigan restaurant

A Northern Michigan woman got an unbelievable start to her new year.

A customer went above and beyond, leaving the single mother a tip for $2,020 on a bill that was only $23. 

A photo of Danielle Franzoni smiling, holding her tip receipt

It happened during Danielle Franzoni's shift on Sunday at Thunder Bay River in Alpena. At first, she says she couldn't believe it and her manager had to assure her the money was legitimate. 

The customer wrote on the receipt "Danielle Happy New Year. 2020 Tip Challenge."

A photo of the woman's receipt, showing the $2,020 tip

"Things like this don't happen to people like me," the 31-year-old told The Alpena News

Franzoni says the random act of kindness came at a critical time. A recovering addict, she's working to rebuild her life after living in a homeless shelter just one year ago.

She plans to use the funds to reinstate her driver's license and build her savings, the thing she says is her last barrier to living a new life. 

She also told The Alpena News she went out to eat that same night and tipped the waiter $20.20. 

“That was my pay it forward,” she said, smiling. “I couldn’t do the other one," referring to tipping $2,020. 

Fox 2 reported on this story from Southfield, Mich.