A Good Turn: Making a Difference | Atmos Energy

A Good Turn: Making a Difference

May 11, 2021
By: American Gas Magazine

After reading meters in the town of Baird, Texas, for the past five years, Johnny Modica, service technician associate at Atmos Energy, knows the streets up and down. He has his usual routes, but one Thursday, it was a lucky chance that he happened to go a different way.

After deciding to drive down an alley so he could turn around, Modica noticed a teenage girl who “looked like she was in distress,” he said. “She was waving her arms around.”

He pulled over and rolled down his window. After initially struggling to understand her, he realized that the girl had special needs. She was also completely alone.

“It really touched my heart, because my son is possibly autistic, so I can relate to that,” said Modica. So, he thought quickly, grabbed paper and pen, and asked if she could write. She carefully wrote one word: “Dad.”

She was also pointing at a house. Modica wanted to be sure he was doing the right thing, so he immediately contacted police, who took over the situation.

“Being a father, that’s what I would want someone to do if it were my son, if he was out there in that position,” he said.

Modica returned to his route, but he couldn’t help worrying and wondering. A couple of hours later, he drove back to the area, but everything looked clear. It was a few days later when he found out that the girl had actually been lost and far from home. Her father also called Atmos Energy to send his thanks: “It feels great to know Atmos Energy cares,” he said.

“Just being able to help her, that means a lot to me,” said Modica. “We are part of the community, and we should act according to what we should do, with our hearts.”

“Johnny cares deeply about his family, and he loves working for this company more than anything,” said Shaun Martin, Atmos Energy manager of public affairs. “He is a trusted, valued employee who would do anything for Atmos Energy, who would do anything for mankind, as you’ve heard. He’s just a solid individual, and he has a tough job, days when it’s cold, when it’s hot, when it’s raining—he’s still out there doing his thing.

“That’s what makes this company so great is that we have thousands of employees like Johnny who are out there doing what they do every day, and they’re not just doing their job— they’re doing what’s best for the communities and customers that we serve.”