Winston-Salem Golden Corral employee overcomes health scare, wins state award

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A Winston-Salem Golden Corral employee is proof that positivity can overcome life’s hurdles.

“It’s the mind drive that you have to have to get you where you need to be,” Jeffrey Bryant said.

Bryant is the first person customers see when they walk into the restaurant. Every guest gets a warm greeting and a smile.

For his commitment to customer service, the North Carolina Restaurant and Lodging Association presented Bryant with the Restaurant Employee of the Year award. It was an honor Bryant was not expecting.

“I looked to the sky and thanked the Lord for allowing me to see another day and also thanked my grandmother and granddaddy for building me up to this point where I am at right now,” Bryant said.

That same strength from his grandparents helped him battle a serious illness.

“I would be coming home from work and all of a sudden, I would get a massive headache and yell out loud. I didn’t know what was going on,” Bryant said.

Doctors later told him what was happening.

“What they call a collloid cyst,” Bryant said. He pointed to the circular scar that’s on the top of his head. “It grew to the size of a golf ball. It was pressing down on my brain, causing me to have those bad headaches.”

The cyst was removed, and the recovery process was long and difficult.

Bryant had to re-learn basic skills like walking and talking. The doctors didn’t give him a lot of hope that he would fully recover, but it appears he is beating the odds.

“If you give up at that point, that’s how your life is going to be: in a slump,” Bryant said. “I refused to give up. Just refused.”

Also it doesn’t hurt to have mom in your corner.

“I am very proud of him,” Elaine Bryant said. “It has been a journey, and everyday is a new day.”

Jeffrey Bryant doesn’t mind talking about his health scare. In fact, he hopes his story inspires others.

“This young generation is lost,” Bryant said. “I hope my story impacts someone else to have them strive to do better.”

“I don’t say it was a struggle. I like to say it’s a positive thing,” Elaine Bryant said. “We are here to keep doing this everyday.”

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