While we know homosexuality isn’t God’s design, it’s sad to see society twist the sin itself into an identity that warrants an attack on the person.
The violent hate crimes that run rampant throughout our country often generate problems like low self-esteem, addiction and in worst-case scenarios, even suicide for individuals who simply can’t stand to live in their own skin anymore.
But it’s kind folks like auto-repair shop owner Richard who are on a mission to mend not only cars, but crushed spirits.
Back in 2012, college student Jordan Addison was the target of repeated acts of vandalism that left him completely devastated.
The sophomore at Radford University in Virginia was home visiting family over spring break when bullies completely trashed his car, branding his doors with homophobic slurs and hateful words like “DIE” and “FAG.”
On top of the vicious name-calling, the vandals slashed his tires and bashed in his car with a brick.
“My aunt and uncle and myself have worked really hard to pay for my vehicle and to keep my expenses going,” said Jordan, tearfully adding, “They actually came out of retirement to help me go through college, so knowing that it’s not safe for me to park my car somewhere because of my sexual orientation, it’s awful. It makes me not even want to leave my house.”
But he had no idea his story would travel so far.
Not long after the incident, the teen received an email from Richard, a man who he’d never met in his life:
“I got an email from Richard who owns the body shop, and it’s about 45 minutes from where I go to school. Never met him before, I had no idea who he is. Never even heard of his shop before.”
Little did he know, Richard had restoration plans up his sleeve that were about to change BOTH of their lives forever.
“I heard about Jordan’s story, and I don’t take discrimination of any sort kindly,” said Richard. “I wanted to help this young man any way I could.”
So this hate-crime slayer got to WORK.
After pouring about $10,000 into repairs, he returned Jordan’s car in mint condition—better than it was when he first bought it.
“I had no idea what he had been doing,” said Jordan. “It BLEW my mind!”
He was completely floored that a total stranger would go to such great lengths for a kid he didn’t even know…but the surprises didn’t end there.
As all wonderful stories do, their inspirational tale made its way to Ellen, who of course had to invite the duo on the show.
After learning a little more about Richard’s selfless efforts and the financial need that both of them were in, she decided to present them each with a $25,000 check.
The look on their faces says it all…
The funds would help Jordan get out of college debt, allowing his aunt and uncle to take a breather, and they would help Richard support himself and his hardworking father at their family-owned shop.
“Sometimes, a simple act of kindness can make your whole world change,” remarked Ellen on the 10th Anniversary premiere show.