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Elderly couple stranded on the side of I-85 after hitting a pothole; strangers step in to help

A local couple is receiving praise after stopping on I-85 in Kings Mountain to help two elderly people who were stranded after hitting a pothole.

KINGS MOUNTAIN, N.C. — Hitting a pothole on the highway isn't most folks' idea of fun, but for one Pennsylvania couple it was a blessing in disguise. 

Lois and Tom Wonsiewicz were eight-and-a-half hours into their trip from Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, to Clemson, South Carolina, when the unthinkable happened just outside Charlotte on I-85.

"We hit an enormous pothole," Tom Wonsiewicz said. "I mean the kind that just knocks the fillings loose in your teeth."

Within seconds, their Honda Accord's right front tire was flat and they were stuck on the side of the road, hundreds of miles from home. 

"Once the adrenaline came down, I began to figure how to connect with roadside assistance," Wonsiewicz said. 

There was just one problem. Their roadside policy lapsed. The couple couldn't believe it. 

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All hope to get back on the road seemed lost, until a Kings Mount, North Carolina, couple just happened to pull up. 

“They were angels that just appeared out of nowhere," Lois Wonsiewicz said.

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"I feel Lois tap me on the shoulder and there are George and Kat with smiles on their face offering to change the tire," Tom Wonsiewicz said.

Kat and George Culver said they were on their way home when they saw the 75-year-olds stranded. 

“I just saw them going through their truck and everything and just figured to pull over and see if we can help them," George Culver said.

George quickly sprang into action to help replace the tire until realizing their spare was nearly flat.

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So, Tom and Lois slowly followed them to a nearby gas station to fill it with air. Kat and George’s son, Dave, then arrived to lead them to a local tire shop to finish the job.

“Walmart couldn’t fix it so that’s how they ended up at Pep Boys," George Culver said.

In no time, a nearby Pep Boys replaced their tire with a new one sending the couple on their way.

“That could’ve been George and I and one day I would hope that somebody would stop and help us if we needed help as well," Kat Culver said.

It’s an experience Tom and Lois are hoping will show others that selflessness still lives.

“It’s really tuned me up to be more conscious and aware of what I can do for others, maybe it's not changing a tire but it’s something," Tom Wonsiewicz said.

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