Trenton Lewis found himself in the position that far too many Americans find themselves in: broke, with a child to support, and no way to get to work. However, he didn't let that stop him from doing what he had to do to provide for his 14-month-old daughter, Karmen, according to WTVR-TV (Richmond). For months, Trenton did the only thing he could do: he walked, five and a half miles each way, from his home to his 4 a.m. shift at a local UPS facility, day in and day out, for seven long months.
That is, until his co-workers found out about it.
The Queen Bee
Every workplace, as they say, has someone who knows everything that goes on in the office. And at the Little Rock, Arkansas UPS depot, that "Queen Bee" is Patricia "Mama Pat" Bryant. She and her husband, Kenneth Bryant, have put in a combined 80 years between them at UPS. And when she got wind of the fact that a colleague was walking 11 miles to work each day, she wasn't going to let that stand, says Kenneth.
"For a young person to decide in their mind 'if I don't have a ride, if I can't get a ride then I'll walk.' If a guy can do that, we can pitch in to help."
Trenton Lewis wakes up early to walk 5.5 miles to his UPS job in Little Rock -- to get there in time by 4 a.m. His coworkers found out, and they surprised him with a car: https://t.co/qwkko8OmGQ pic.twitter.com/vmZpAJfGeG
— KXAN News (@KXAN_News) February 12, 2018
Without telling Trenton, "Mama Pat" took up a collection among the co-workers on their shift. Before long, they'd raised $2,000.
"Everybody that I talked to said yes! The hardest part was reminding them to bring cash."
It wasn't much, but it was enough to buy a 2006 Saturn Ion, thanks in part to a seller who was willing to come down on the price a bit, once he heard what it was for.
Lewis' co-workers, led by "Mama Pat," lured Lewis outside into the parking lot for a "union meeting." It was there, surrounded by his colleagues, that Trenton was given the precious gift. Not surprisingly, he was overcome with emotion.
"God always has something for you. I'm never going to forget this ever."
True to form, Lewis made the gift about the most important person in his life, his daughter: once his shift was over, his first trip in the car was to take Karmen out for a meal.
Not The First Time
Trenton is not the first person to feel the love from his co-workers after they found out he had to walk to work. In a story that mirrors Trenton's almost word-for-word, the Today show in 2017 reported on the case of Derrick Taylor. Like Trenton, Derrick had to walk five miles to his 4 a.m. shift to a UPS depot. When his co-workers found out about it, they saved up $1,100 to buy the 19-year-old a used Jeep Cherokee.