Lawyer becomes good news internet sensation after leaving $25k tip for tooth decay waiter

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By Alex Aldridge on

US personal injury lawyer strikes marketing gold


The motto of Oklahoma’s Fred Boettcher Law Group is “We’re more than just lawyers”.

But until recently only handful of residents of Ponca City, the small town where Fred Boettcher’s firm is based, knew this. With Ponca City supporting a population of just 25,389, that’s not many people.

Things changed dramatically earlier this month when Boettcher, who leads his two-lawyer strong firm, found himself across the border in neighbouring state Kansas and popped in for a meal at the Doo-Dah Diner in Wichita.

There, the attorney encountered a waiter, Brian Maixner, with extremely bad tooth decay. Rather than retreat from the restaurant in disgust, Boettcher demonstrated his “more than just lawyers” credentials with an incredible act of philanthropy, offering to pay to get Maixner’s teeth sorted out. The cost? A cool $25,000 (£17,000).

After local media picked up the story, news of Boettcher’s generosity quickly went viral, reaching CNN and the US national media before going global. “The way to be satisfied in your life is to be kind to everybody and be as generous as you possibly can be,” the kindly lawyer was quoted as saying by BuzzFeed, as the owner of the diner, Timirie Shibley, reflected:

“The most common comment we’ve seen from people online, is that this story has restored their faith in mankind.”

Pricey dental work beneficiary Maixner added:

“I am a guy, and I am not scared to admit it, I cried a little bit.”

Last week, before and after photos of a smiling Maixner even appeared on the front page of viral image sharing site Imgur, where they have had over half a million views.


With the little Fred Boettcher Law Group now surely the best-known firm in Oklahoma, that $25k looks like a rather good value investment …