Matt White was grocery shopping in Memphis, Tennessee, when 16-year-old Chauncy Jones asked if he could carry White's groceries to the 30-year-old's car in exchange for a pack of doughnuts. Little did Chauncy know that he was about to change his life.
He told White that he had taken a bus to the "rich people's Kroger" in the hope of getting some food, since his own fridge was empty. "He looked ashamed, hungry, and broken," White writes on Facebook. So instead of buying him doughnuts, "I went on a shopping spree" for cereal, pizza, milk, soap, toothbrushes and more.
But when he drove the boy home with the haul, he discovered Chauncy and his disabled mother were truly living with "nothing," he writes, per Fox 13. "They didn't even have beds or furniture. They were sleeping on pads made out of sleeping bags, they had two lamps and nothing in their fridge."
White decided to help the family even further. Chauncy "is a straight A student who is doing his best to make it in a world with no money and very few resources. He wants to work and help his mother financially," he writes on a GoFundMe page he set up to raise $250 so Chauncy could buy a lawn mower and start mowing lawns for money. Two weeks later, more than $273,000 has been raised, and now more than $324,000.
"I didn't know this much love could exist in one place, be aimed in one direction, but seen and felt and empowered by so many people," White says, per USA Today.
The money will be put in a trust for Chauncy's education and perhaps a new home. Mother and son are now living in a hotel over security concerns, but are "getting better now," Chauncy tells WMC News. "Something told me to go to Kroger. God told me to go to Kroger."
(In related news, the internet also rallied for this veteran scammed out of his life savings.)