After a teenager in Buffalo New York single-handedly cleaned up his city after Sunday night’s protest, he was rewarded with a convertible and a full ride to college.
Antonio Gwynn Jr., 18, decided to go downtown with a broom and some trash bags around 2 a.m. on Monday after watching the protest via Facebook Live.
The high school senior kept at his clean up effort for the next 10 hours. The next morning when a group of community members showed up to restore the streets, they found that Gwynn had, for the most part, already taken care of it.
Gwynn told CNN that he saw on the local news that Bailey Avenue in Buffalo was covered in glass and garbage, and he knew people needed to use that street to get to work in the morning.
When Buffalo resident, Matt Block, heard about the teenager’s act of kindness, he wanted to show his gratitude. Block, 27, had read on Facebook that Gwynn was seeking advice about buying a car, so he decided to offer Gwynn his precious, red 2004 Mustang.
“I couldn’t come to grips with selling it, and this was a good way for me to get rid of it and know someone that gets it is going to appreciate it, I think,” Block said.
When Gwynn accepted the sports car he said he was so shocked he “didn’t have any words.”
Gwynn’s mother, who passed away in 2018, also drove a red Mustang. There was no way Block could have known just how meaningful the gift would be for Gwynn.
And on top of that, local businessman Bob Briceland heard Gwynn’s story and threw in a full year of auto insurance free of charge.
“I just felt compelled to help him out. We just need to get together our whole city and show people how there’s so many good people here,” Briceland told CNN affiliate WKBW.
But that’s not all: Medaille College in Buffalo wanted to show their support for the clean-up hero and offered him a full scholarship.
“I literally stopped, pulled over, and started crying. So did my great aunt. My little cousin did also,” said Gwynn.
Gwynn had planned to go to trade school while saving up for college, but now he will attend Medaille College to study business in the fall while learning mechanics on the side.
He hopes to open a cleaning business or repair shop in the future.
Gwynn is grateful to be recognized by his community.
He says, “I appreciate everything everyone is doing for me.” He hopes his mom would be proud of him today.
We know she would be.