Royal Farms in Hanover reserves special seat to tribute long-time customer who was killed

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HANOVER, YORK COUNTY, Pa. -- A local convenience store is turning a tragedy into something positive.

Royal Farms in Hanover is paying tribute to 80-year-old James Dell was tragically hit and killed while crossing the street in Hanover.

"He was a joker, that he was," said Lisa Lowe, store leader at Royal Farms in Hanover. “As soon as he walked in through the doors he would say 'honey I’m home',"she added.

Lowe and her staff have reserved Dell's favorite seat at the store in his memory.

“We just had felt like we needed to reach out one more time not that we can see him again but let him know we are thinking about him," said Lowe.

“We’d order his fries for him and then he’d get his lottery tickets and he’d just start his day," added Lowe.

Every morning, like clock work, Dell would claim his seat.

"People would move just be because it was his table," said Lowe.

“He was my bad kid I fussed him I said you know you don’t own that seat anybody can sit there and he would say yeah but they know I sit there every morning," said Robin Pittinger, daughter.

Even though Dell's chair may now sit empty, the table at Royal Farms in Hanover is left with all of the things he loved including fries, soda, lottery tickets and more.

“Potato wedges is what he would eat for breakfast, that’s what he ate," said Pittinger.

Dell's daughter says she was overwhelmed with emotion when she heard about that ‘exclusive’ table that was set in his honor.

“We’ve so many people telling me how nice of a person he was and how kind he was and how he touched peoples lives and that’s the person he was, he would have given the shirt off of his back. He wasn’t a rich person but he would have given you what he had," added Pittinger.

"We miss him, we miss hearing his voice," said Lowe.

The Royal Farms Hanover staff says they plan to keep the memorial table up for another few days.

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