A poor boy desperately needed money to buy food and medicines for his sick mom, yet he helped an old man in exchange for donuts. A few days later, he found a box full of money with a tear-jerking note on his doorstep.
The summer break of May 2021 seemed like a fresh breath of fun for all the kids except Dylan Moore. The 10-year-old lived with his mother, Merlyn, and a pet dog.
While kids his age enjoyed their childhood, Dylan had to take up the responsibilities of a grown-up after his dad abandoned them.
Growing up, Dylan never had a rosy childhood. His mother often fell ill and could hardly work. She invested her earnings in Dylan’s education because she wanted him to become a doctor and serve the needy and sick.
That summer, the boy decided to help his mother ease her burden by getting his feet on the streets. Little did he know a life-changing fortune would arrive at his doorstep soon…
“I don’t want you to go begging on the streets, son,” Merlyn cried. “I want you to become a doctor one day…not this. It’s so hot, and I don’t want you pleading with random strangers for money.”
But Dylan’s mother thought wrong. He wasn’t planning on begging for money. He was going to help elderly customers carry their bags outside the supermarket in exchange for money.
“I’ll lose hope in life if I don’t help you, mom…Let me do this for you, please,” he pleaded.
After he convinced his mother, he left for work, taking old cardboard with him with an inscription that read: “Will help you carry your purchases home for $3 or food for my mother, dog, and me.”
Dylan stood outside the busy supermarket with the cardboard sign near his feet, looking at elderly customers with hope and hunger.
The boy’s first day at work was exhausting. He helped six people with their shopping bags and earned $18. With that money, he bought cough syrup and other medicines for his mom, two loaves of bread, a dozen eggs, and some candles to light up their little altar.
“Mom, look! I bought this from my earnings today!” he exclaimed.
Merlyn was proud of her son, but it still bothered her that he didn’t get to enjoy his childhood like his friends.
Several days passed, and Dylan always returned home with some earnings. On a similar day, he stood looking for customers when an old stranger approached him with a warm smile.
“Son, I spent all my money in the store, so I don’t have the $3 you need,” the old man said. “But I can trade you some donuts if you can help me carry my bags.”
Though the donuts sounded appealing to Dylan, he refused the old man’s offer and decided to help him for free. “That’s okay. I’ll help you for free,” he said.
The old man was stunned by the boy’s kindness, but he didn’t want the poor kid to work for free. “No! A deal is a deal,” he insisted. “Never compromise your work conditions to favor someone else. I’m a gentleman who has to pay you for your work. And you, my son, must respect yourself and your job.”
Dylan was surprised by the man’s words. He smiled and happily helped him carry the bags to his house. When they arrived there, the man remembered he hadn’t yet bought the donuts he had promised the boy.
“Son, what is your name?” he asked.
“Dylan,” the kid replied, smiling.
“Son, forgive your grandpa…I completely forgot to buy your donuts today…We agreed on trading your services for donuts. We should be men of our word. So, please give me your address.”
The man told Dylan that he would send the donuts to him in a few days. The boy reluctantly gave the stranger his address and hopped off happily, satisfied in serving a man in need.
It had been a week since Dylan last saw the man, and there were no donuts that came either. Dylan let it slide because he never expected anything in return and assumed that the grandpa had forgotten about it.
One evening, he was resting on the couch after a long day at work when he heard loud bangs on his door.
“Who is it? One second, I’m coming….”
But when Dylan opened the door, there was nobody outside, except for a strange box at the doorstep.
“What is this thing doing here? Mom! Come here! I’m scared. There’s a big box outside our house.” he shrieked.
Dylan’s mom was busy inside and didn’t hear him. Curious, the boy picked up the box and took it inside. He hoped it wasn’t some kind of a dirty prank by the neighboring kids.
The box was pretty heavy, which scared him even more. Nervous, he opened it and froze dead seeing the massive amount of money inside!
“Mom! Come here quickly! Look at this! …Mom!… Mom! “
“What is it, honey?” Merlyn said as she entered the room. She stopped in her tracks when she saw the box full of cash.
Dylan picked up a smaller box inside, and when he opened it, he smiled. It was a box of donuts with a note that read, “From your beloved grandpa, Benjamin Phil.” Dylan understood it was from the old man he had helped several days ago.
They counted the money and were shocked when it totaled $230K.
“No, son, you must find him and return this…we cannot take so much money from someone just like that.”
“Yes, mom…you’re right,” Dylan agreed. They rushed to the old man’s house only to find it empty.
“That’s weird…He was here a week ago and told me this was his house.”
Just then, a neighbor approached the boy.
“What is your name, son?” he asked.
“Oh, so you’re, Dylan…Wait a sec…I have something for you.”
The man returned with a letter in his hand.
“Mr. Phil told me to give this to a boy named Dylan who would come looking for him.”
Dylan read the letter, and tears began to form in his eyes. It turned out Benjamin was a successful businessman who had retired after his son’s death. Since he had nobody to inherit his wealth, he chose Dylan as his heir and left him a life-changing fortune along with the letter.
“I know you would come to return the money. But I assure you, it’s all yours. You deserve it better than anyone. If you want to do something for your grandpa, use this money to help serve the needy.”
At that moment, Dylan realized that sincerity and kindness are always rewarded.
Eventually, the mother and son honored the old man’s wish. Merlyn kept the money in an account that Dylan would gain access to when he turned 18. She was proud of Dylan, and the incident bred honesty and kindness in the young boy.
What can we learn from this story?
Sincerity and kindness will always be rewarded. When the old man needed help carrying his shopped items and didn’t have money to pay, Dylan offered to help for free. The boy’s kindness and sincerity fetched him a huge reward when the stranger gifted him $230K.
Inspire your kids to be good and do good always. When Merlyn saw the money gifted to Dylan, she told him they could not accept such a huge amount from someone. She took him to the old man’s house to return it and bred seeds of honesty in her young son.
Click here to read about how a heartless son who kicked his mom out to live in a roofless house met ugly consequences after his brother learned of it.