Some people may say they’re dedicated to their jobs but others don’t just talk the talk, they walk the walk—literally.
To make it to his shift as a Buffalo Wild Wings cook, Donte Franklin was leaving for work three hours early each day and trekking more than eight miles on foot to arrive on time. At the end of the day, the 20-year-old Oklahoman reversed his journey to walk home.
Franklin credits his amazing work ethic to his late mom, who passed away four years ago. “I really don’t care if it gets tiring. I just have to keep pushing,” Franklin told FOX News, “I walk just to make my family proud.”
Whether or not he’s got a guardian angel keeping tabs on him, Franklin’s life recently got an amazing and unexpected lift thanks to a stranger’s random act of kindness.
Michael Lynn was out running errands when he saw a young man—Franklin—walking in the sweltering summer heat. On his way back, he noticed the same young man—still walking—and decided to offer him a ride.
When Lynn learned more about Franklin’s 17-mile work pilgrimage, he couldn’t help but be more than a little awed. He decided to share the details of Franklin’s story on Facebook—where it was quickly shared more than 1,000 times.
One of the people who saw it was Kerri Collins. She and her husband are the driving forces behind a biker charity group called My Riding Buddies Oklahoma and Bikers for Elves (MRBO).
“Anytime I see something posted concerning anybody anywhere in Oklahoma, I immediately jump in and we do whatever we can as a group,” Keri Collins told KOCO. “It just touched me that this man is only 20 years old and is walking to two different jobs with nothing in the heat. It opened my heart because kids his age don’t do that.”
In appreciation of his extraordinary efforts, MRBO gifted Franklin with a brand-new bike prior to his next shift. His commute had just gotten a whole lot easier, but Franklin’s good luck was just beginning.
Inspired by the young man’s grit and determination, a GoFundMe page was set up in his name so he could buy a car. So far, close to $52,000 has been raised.
Franklin, who’s studying to be a welder, doesn’t have a driver’s license yet. While he plans to purchase a car eventually, in the meantime, he’ll be using the funds to help his family and taking his bike to work.
Donte Franklin says he considers everything that’s happened to him to be a blessing and believes that he and Lynn were fated to become friends. It’s something Lynn believes as well.
“As long as he wants to, I want to keep him in my life and I want to be in his life,” Lynn told KOCO. “… I told him, if the Lord opens the door for you, walk through it… I think it’s open for him and the rest is up to him.”
And we suspect, that’s not just talking the talk.