The Wednesday Breakfast Club tradition at Peggy Winckowski's home in St. Louis began in October 2021 after her grandson, Sam Crowe, then a high school freshman, told his friends that his grandma made a better breakfast than the diner where they went when they had a late start. Then in July 2022, after Sam was killed in a car crash, the teens came to grieve with her every day for the whole week to make sure she was okay. As that summer ended, Winckowski told the teens they were still welcome for breakfast. Now there are about 30 regular attendees. Winckowski and her husband — who has dementia and Parkinson's disease, and needs constant care — are on a fixed income but local businesses and students' families have been helping with groceries."I've lost my 15-year-old grandson, but in his place, Sam gave me 30 extra grandbabies," she says. "I think Sam is directing this from above."

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