MEMPHIS, Tenn. – Thousands of people across the country are reaching out to help a struggling Tennessee teenager and his mother, after a stranger offered to help.
Chauncy Jones Black is 16 years old and has lived a difficult life. On June 10, he approached Matt White in a grocery store. Matt documented the meeting in a Facebook post.
“I just met the most inspiring person ever,” White wrote on Facebook. “He had taken the bus at 9:00 at night to get to the “rich people’s Kroger” on Highland as he called it. He approached me while I was shopping for produce asking if he could help me carry my grocery bags to my car in exchange for buying him a pack of glazed donuts.”
White said the boy’s humility immediately touched him.
“This kid looked like he had been turned down 100 times. He looked ashamed, hungry and broken. In my heart I screamed a loud ‘yes!’, but to him I just chuckled and said, ‘yeah dude, we’ll get you some donuts,'” White wrote. “I asked him if he was by himself and he said that he had come all the way out here with the hopes of someone buying him something to eat because he and his mother had nothing at home. He had no phone, a bus pass, and he was depending on the graces of a stranger to feed him within the hour before the bus left.”
White took the boy on a shopping spree, buying him plenty of food to stock his kitchen with as well as soap and toiletries.
“All the while we talked and he told me how he makes straight A’s in school and is trying to get a job to help his mom pay rent. This kid was amazing. Chauncy kept calling himself poor, but he told me that one day he was gonna be wealthy and own his own businesses so that he could help other people in his neighborhood and buy them groceries like me,” wrote White.
At the end of the shopping trip, White drove Chauncy home and was heartbroken by what he saw.
“He wasn’t kidding. He and his mom had nothing,” wrote White.
There was no furniture inside the house. Chauncy and his mom didn’t even have beds. They slept on pads made of sleeping bags. Their refrigerator was completely empty.
White said Chauncy’s mom had trouble speaking and walking.
White helped Chauncy unpack the groceries and fill his cabinets with food.
“As we unpacked the food into their kitchen, you could see the hope coming back into Chauncy’s eyes. He knew he wasn’t going to be hungry. He looked like a kid again,” wrote White.
The Facebook post quickly went viral, getting more than 6,000 shares.
Since posting the original story, White has started a GoFundMe page with the hope of raising $250 to buy Chauncy a lawn mower.
The page has so far raised more than $68,000. White hopes to furnish their home, and maybe even buy them their own home in a safer neighborhood.