A local community in Oregon rallies behind Hunter, a first grade boy, upon seeing an image of him serving detention, sitting secluded in the cafeteria behind a cardboard box.
The 6-year-old boy goes to school everyday like any other child at Lincoln Elementary School but sometimes arrives late. The mother drives an old Dodge Durango but the car occasionally acts up. The family kept pushing off the repairs because they simply cannot afford them at the moment.
Hunter’s mother, Nicole Garloff, 25 told ABC News, “[The school has] a policy where every three tardies, you get a detention,” and that “Every tardy after that, you get a detention.”
One morning, the family ran into car issues again. This time, making it the third tardy for Hunter. Garloff said Hunter knew he was getting detention that day and that he was crying on his way to school that morning.
She decided to give her son a visit during lunch on this day and was shocked to learn what detention entailed. Hunter’s mother stated “He was at the first table as you walk into the cafeteria, and he was just sitting there with one of those cardboard poster partitions in front of him … and two or three books next to him.”
Garloff told ABC News, the detention policy is so that students can make up the missed work for arriving late. Since Hunter was only late a few minutes, he didn’t miss much and was simply told to read a book.
Upon seeing her son being isolated, she felt horrible. The mother said “my heart broke because he was just sitting there and he was just trying to peak the side, I just felt terrible for him.”
Garloff upset seeing her son like this, took out her Ipad and took a picture of young Hunter. She then went on Facebook and posted the image. The image immediately started to gain a lot of attention and went viral among the community. The image of Hunter sitting alone was brought to the attention of Local radio host, Bill Meyers, where he talked about it in the morning show and this is where things really took off.
The local Oregon community and repair shops started calling one another. Phone call after phone calls, people started inquiring information about how they could help the family.
Soon after finding out the true reasons why the 6-Year-Old arrived late to Lincoln Elementary School, Meyers reached out to local repair shops to see if they were willing to repair the car. Repair shops told Meyers that the repairs on the car would actually be more than what the car was worth. This was when a local company, Rapid Repo and Collections offered to donate a 2001 Chrysler Town and Country van to the family. Other local repair shops then offered to do repairs and replacements, fixing things from the window to the car’s tires. Local community members then also gave the family gas cards and gift cards to local restaurants as their way of helping out.
The mother stated that “We’re so thankful to all the people in our community that have just been so supportive.” Since the family received the van, Garloff said, Hunter has never once been late to school.
Stories like this makes us appreciate the local community around us. It makes us feel fuzzy and warm knowing that in the time of need, others will extend their hand and help us.
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