Beyond the Kitchen: Hugo Uitzil-Tun's Legacy of Kindness

Meet Hugo Uitzil-Tun

Hugo Uitzil-Tun, a longtime Pagliacci employee, is one of the hardest working and most generous people we know. In addition to working at Pagliacci, Hugo works a second job at Merlino’s so he has money to send back home.  

Hugo is from Manuel Ávila Camacho, a town of roughly 1,200 people in Quintana Roo, Mexico. For many years, Hugo’s father would feed and provide gifts for the community on December 24. After his father died, Hugo and his sister, Olivia, picked up the family tradition. This will be their fourth year of providing food and gifts for the children. 

Hugo has worked at several Pagliacci locations and is now an anchor at our Valley store. When asked what he likes best about working for Pagliacci, Hugo says, “The people. My co-workers, managers, the people in the office — the people are great.” 

Some of you may remember the heartwarming story of Hugo’s TikTok from last year. Hugo and his wife, Linda, were Christmas shopping at the Walmart in Factoria with their two-year-old daughter (they also have four older kids) when a twenty-something stranger in a blue t-shirt, jeans, and sneakers asked him for money to buy a gallon of milk.  

“I only had seven dollars in my pocket,” says Hugo. “In my mind, I was like I might need that money, but I was like, you know what, let’s go help him out.” 

Hugo handed the guy a few dollars. Then he got the surprise of his life.  

The guy was Jimmy Darts, a TikTok personality known for random acts of kindness. Darts was looking to reward generosity by giving away $10,000 to a family with kids — and a shopping spree at Walmart. At that point, Hugo was struggling to find the money to make the annual celebration back home happen. With the newfound money, Hugo raised the stakes and bought a bunch of gifts for the community both here and at home.

Darts managed to get the initial footage with an iPhone carefully placed in the front pocket of his t-shirt. Once Darts revealed he was a TikTokker, three other guys with cameras came out from around the corner. 

“It was the best day ever,” says Hugo. “That was crazy.” 

Publish Date: December 5, 2023