US: Teen donates shoes to homeless man and moves thousands on social media

An American teenager who volunteered to help homeless people donated his new shoes to one of them and said: “Take them. It is what God wants.” At first, his mother was angry when he came home barefoot, but after understanding why he did so she said: “I am proud.”
The recorded incident Photo Credit: CNN/Channel 2 News

This week, 14-year-old Laron Tunstill Jr. from Louisville, Kentucky made a huge impact when he helped a homeless man. The act of kindness was filmed by people passing by and went viral. Thousands in the US and around the world were moved by the teenager’s kind gesture, who agreed to donate his new sneakers to someone less fortunate.

The incident occurred while Tunstill was volunteering on Labor Day by handing out food to the less fortunate. He and his friends handed out soup and hamburgers to the homeless on one of Louisville’s major streets. Suddenly, he spotted a man sitting at the corner with his head down.

The teenager began talking with the homeless man and noticed that his shoes were worn out and had no soles: “His toe was touching the ground. His shoes were completely worn,” said Jason Reynolds, the founder of the Purpme volunteer organization.

At that point without hesitation, Tunstill took his one-day-old Air Jordans off of his feet and handed them to the homeless man. Tunstill recalled the situation between the two: “At first, he said, ‘I cannot take them. They are too expensive.’ I told him to take them because that is what God wants me to do.” The homeless man then began praying out of immense appreciation and one of the organization activists recorded the touching moment that has now been shared over one million times on social media.

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