Photos of a New York barber have gone viral after he announced he gave a man in a wheelchair a haircut outside his store, since his business is not wheelchair-accessible.
Joe Cocozza owns Joe’s Upscale Barber Shop in Webster.
He said in a Facebook post that he wasn’t at his store at the time, but photos captured the moment his staffer Victor Burgos went outside to give the wheelchair-bound customer a haircut.
“I wasn’t there, but a few days ago at the shop we had a man in a wheelchair come to the shop on a recommendation. Unfortunately we are not handicapped accessible,” Cocozza said.
“Not knowing why he was out there. No one in the shop gave it any mind. Then our phone rang. It was the man outside looking for a way to come in. This is where I’m proud to say. Instead of telling him we couldn’t do it because we are not handicapped accessible. Victor Burgos went outside with his tools and cut his hair on the sidewalk,” Cocozza shared on Facebook.
Cocozza said what happened was unusual, but wasn’t unusual for Burgos.
“I couldn’t be happier when I was told this story. I couldn’t be happier to work and know a person of such kind nature as Victor. I’m proud to know that even when I’m not around our staff will go out of their way. Just to make someone happy!!” he added.
“He did not have to do this. Vic is one of our busiest barbers and is always busy. So Vic thank you for being that guys and not only always proving what type of person you are but also being a CLASS ACT and bring class to Joe’s Upscale Barber Shop.”
Cocozza then noted that Burgos did not know he was being photographed, saying, “Vic had no idea these pics were even take.”
Burgos, 34, told Inside Edition that he wanted to make sure the wheelchair-bound man got a proper haircut.
“It’s about making sure everyone gets a proper grooming,” Burgos said.
He noted that he and colleagues discussed lifting the man inside but decided it would be impossible.
“We weren’t going to be able to get this heavy-duty thing in here so I took my cordless barber clippers, trimmers, shavers, and sheers, straight blade, comb—everything I need to give him the same haircut that he’d get if he came inside,” Burgos said.
The man in the wheelchair hasn’t been identified but he was so pleased with the cut that he sent his aide to get a cut at the shop a few days later.
And the community has reacted to what happened, organizing to plan for the installation of a wheelchair ramp at the shop.