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Day 48 & 49: Death and Pizza

A 63 year old Domino’s delivery driver died outside an apartment in Birmingham, AL on Sunday.

"My Father was simply trying to earn an honorable dollar. He didn't feel entitled for it, he worked for it, and it makes me sick to my core how someone felt they were entitled to his money (and drivers never carry much, he always deposits it every time he runs back to the store) or his life over what? $20? My dad’s life was ended for $20??? I can't bear it. I just can't believe it," his daughter said on the site.

That story stuck out Monday. It was plastered all over a private driver’s group I’m a part of. I saw it on my phone. I even got a message from a friend on Facebook.

“Stay safe,” he said. He included a link to the story.

“I saw that. Sad,” I said.

Those law enforcement officials will do their best to solve that crime. I’m sure of it.

The Pizza Delivery Driver’s Forum has opened my eyes to how bad this problem is. (I am affiliated with the forum as a contributor and a member. The owner appreciates my blog. He encouraged me to make my own thread. I do not moderate my thread nor the rest of the forum. I can’t guarantee you won’t read something offensive. FYI.)

He’s not the first victim – fatal victim – of violence against delivery drivers. Nor is he the last. This violence is senseless. People are desperate. Is it really worth it?

“Wow, RI,” you might say. “This probably makes you want to quit delivering.”

Not really. It makes me want to increase awareness of violence and robbery.

Tock was saying just the other day that he has been robbed of his pizza before.

There are steps myself and others take to be safe on the road. Police officers nationwide assist drivers in their duties.

This is reality. Yes, I’m delivering to destroy debt. Yes, I see amazing stories. No, I have never been robbed, nor even accosted. I am grateful for that. But I’ve been warned. My Bishop urged me caution. My father did, too. Amazewife even told me once that pizza delivery is one of the most dangerous jobs in America. 10 years ago, some thought it was the fifth dangerous. The data is questionable.

More solid data is presented in Pizza Today, February, 2014.

Seriously? Pizza Today? It’s a thing.

Although pizza delivery is often mentioned as one of the ten most dangerous occupations, no such list exists. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, out of 4,609 fatal work injuries recorded in the United States in 2011, 759 of those deaths were among driver/sales workers and truck drivers. Pizza delivery drivers would indeed be included in that category, says Andrew Kato, an economist with the Occupational Safety and Health Statistics program of the BLS. But the segment also includes, for example, drivers who pick up or deliver laundry on a regular route.

“We are not aware of anyone who has data with such a specific occupational coding system that they would be able to identify specifically pizza delivery personnel,” Kato says.

-Pizza Today thing

Monday and Tuesday nights were $65+ nights. Both nights were fabulous. People are generous. It’s Christmas. People need service. They want pizza. They want a smile. They want freedom, and toys, and some people want Jesus. Most want family.

Najeh Masaid’s daughter won’t see him this year. Or any other year. Neither will his Domino’s family.

Do me a favor. Say a prayer for those lost. Say a prayer for those who lose. If you don’t pray, hug someone or something. Order a pizza. Smile at the guy or gal that helps you. Ask them how their nights are going. Give a tip if you can. And watch the backs of runners like me.

Staying, in a Christmas kind of way:


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