A teenage cashier working at a Princeton, Texas, Walmart to pay for college was rewarded by his community for an act of kindness that went viral on Facebook.
John Lopez, Jr., 19, picked up a woman's $110 grocery bill when he noticed that she didn't have enough money ahead of Christmas.
“She started crying and I was like ‘OK, I got you – I got you’,” he told CBS 11. “I just felt in my heart that the Lord told me I had to help her.”
Another shopper, Laci Simms, snapped a photo of John and posted it on social media.
“I just witnessed this ‘kid’ pay for a cart of merchandise for a woman in obvious distress about her inability to pay,” Simms wrote. “She was a few people ahead of us and when she had trouble paying her bill, he stepped in and told her if she’d wait, he would pay her total. Ya’ll, it was $110 dollars!”
She said Lopez is always upbeat, courteous and efficient.
“He just renewed my faith in humanity and the generation we are raising! Everyone share this so the world knows what a blessing John is to our community!”
The post quickly went viral. Brandon Weddle, another customer who frequently interacted with Lopez, shared that he and his wife have talked about how kind he is and set up a GoFundMe page as a chance to give back to him.
"He touches a lot of lives on a daily basis," Weddle wrote. "I'd like to give back to him for constantly giving himself to our community. Any little bit would be much appreciated. He is also trying to save money to put himself into college. Let's come together as a community and pay John's tuition. He will do big things!"
Within hours, the Princeton community quickly surpassed the initial goal of $1,000. The fundraiser has collected more than $35,000.
Walmart held a special event to honor Lopez. The city's mayor and the police department presented him with a certificate and a medallion, and the funds were transferred to his account, which he said will go toward college.
"I am so glad everyone is seeing what a blessing John is to our community!" Simms told Fox News. "This is how humans should interact. With love and kindness and without judgment."