Young man who walked miles to work now drives after police raise cash

A 19-year-old man in California who walked miles to and from work saw his life change in the span of just a few weeks, after police helped raise money to buy him a car, and send him to college.

Jourdan Duncan’s commute to work was like no other. Every morning he would walk from his parents’ house in Vallejo, Calif. to his job in Benecia to Vallejo, Calif. – a whopping seven-mile trek. It would take him two hours each way, Fox 2 reported.


Last September, Duncan caught the attention of a Benecia police officer, who spotted him walking along an industrial road. “It was kind of weird to see someone walking around on foot,” Cpl. Kirk Keffer told The Washington Post.

Keffer stopped Duncan and gave him a ride home, learning his story along the way.


Duncan had just graduated from high school and had a job at Pro-Form Laboratories, where he worked in a packaging line from 3 p.m. until around midnight. He was saving up for college and to fix his broken-down car.

Instead of being a burden to friends or co-workers, Duncan decided to walk to work. “It’s not a problem for me,” he told the Washington Post in September.

Inspired by the young man's story, Keffer approached his police department and the Benicia Police Officers’ Association and together they surprised Duncan with a new bike for him to use.

“We would like to acknowledge your hard work and dedication for what you do and setting the example for kids your age,” they told him, according to Keffer. “Hopefully this’ll make your trip easier.”

But the officers didn’t stop there. They started a GoFundMe campaign to raise some money for Duncan to fix his car.

The inspirational story went viral. The campaign raised more than $42,000 in four months.

“The community just had an outpouring of love for him,” Keffer told the Post on Tuesday. “It was something the community needed, something positive at the time.”

With the money, Duncan purchased a used Volkswagen Passat for $2,900 and put the rest in the bank. He has also started taking classes at Solano Community College so that he can following in the footsteps of some of his relatives and become a California Highway Patrol Officer.

“I’m just super proud of him. He could have went so many different ways with that money,” Keffer said. “He’s got a bright future ahead of him. I just hope that he continues down this path.”

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