Young man who walked 20 miles to 1st day of work receives company CEO’s personal car
It was one of the worst times something could go wrong.
Walter Carr, a college student in Birmingham, Ala., was starting his new job at Bellhops Movers in the morning. He wanted to show them his “dedication” and was ready to work, ABC 33/40 reported.
Then his car broke down.
He didn’t know anyone else on his work team, so he couldn’t call them for a ride. He was due to start his first move the next day, July 13, nearly twenty miles away from where he lived in the Homewood area of Birmingham, the Homewood Star reported.
So he did the only thing he knew he could: He got on Google Maps, calculated the walking time, took a quick nap, and then laced up his shoes.
He left the house at midnight and just started walking, expecting to make it to the house about seven hours later, a little early for the 8 a.m. start time, according to the Homewood Star.
And he probably would have made it all the way too — except he got a little help from a few curious and impressed police officers.
After about three hours of walking, Carr found himself in Pelham, where concerned officer Mark Knighten pulled over to ask if he was okay. “He was very polite. It was ‘yes sir’ and ‘no sir,’” Knighten told AL.com.
The officer, and a few others, bought the student some breakfast and drove him the rest of the way to the house where he would start work, according to the site.
“I just wanted to get to my job and show I was dedicated to it,” Carr told the Homewood Star.
Carr’s dedication made a major impression on Jenny Lamey, one of the people Carr helped move that day.
“Chris and I woke up around 5:45am to get everything staged and ready for the movers. Around 6:30am the doorbell rang. It was a police officer. He proceeded to tell us that he had picked up “this nice kid” in Pelham early this morning,” Lamey wrote on Facebook. “He WALKED ALL NIGHT to get from Homewood to Pelham. Because he needed to get to work ... You could tell how the officer told us this story that he had complete admiration for Walter and by my reaction he could tell I did too. “
Lamey wrote that she invited Carr inside to eat and wait for the other movers, but he said he wanted to get to work right away.
“I just can’t tell you how touched I was by Walter and his journey. He is humble and kind and cheerful and he had big dreams! He is hardworking and tough. I can’t imagine how many times on that lonely walk down 280 in the middle of the night did he want to turn back ... But he walked until he got here! I am in total awe of this young man!” she wrote.
Lamey’s post received hundreds of shares on Facebook, and many asked her to set up a donation page so they could help Carr with his car trouble. Lamey set up a GoFundMe page which had already raised thousands of dollars by Tuesday.
That’s not all. On Monday, the CEO of Bellhops, Luke Marklin, decided to give Carr a little gift -- his own personal 2014 Ford Escape, WKRG reported.
The boss drove the car down from Chattanooga himself to gift it to Carr. “It’s in much better hands with you than it is with me, and I couldn’t think of a better way to part ways with this or to put it to better use,” Marklin told Carr, according to the Homewood Star.
Carr told AL.com he plans to work until he graduates from community college, then join the Marines.
“I want people to know this - no matter what the challenge is, you can break through the challenge. Nothing is impossible unless you make it impossible,’‘ he told the site. “You can do anything you set your mind to. I’ve got God by my side.”