In life as in the dance, grace glides on blistered feet. – Alice Abrams



Without humility there can be no humanity.  – John Buchan

as i watched the local news last night, and after taking in all of the stories of war, and violence, and crime, and mayhem, i saw this story – of a man’s love for his children, of family, of survival, of a community, who didn’t judge or turn away, but instead, who reached out and gave what they could to help someone who needed helping. this deeply touched me and reminded me of the innate goodness in people.

According to My Fox Detroit on Jan. 23, an anonymous donor will be paying utility bills for Don Epperson, a 53-year-old father of four who walksDetroit’s mean streets looking for salvage firewood to keep his kids from freezing this winter.

“The same fire that keeps us warm, feeds us,” says Don. The family heats water in buckets to wash dishes in and bathe.

Don has worked as a roofer and a butcher. He’s very willing to work, but there are no jobs. So he does the best he can for his four children, the youngest of whom is just 10. Despite it all, Don’s children are performing very well in school and their current lifestyle hasn’t discouraged them.

After hearing the story, a Good Samaritan stepped forward offering to pay Don’s utility bills. Don was emotional and overjoyed.

I’d just like to say thank you so very much from the bottom of my heart and from my children. We thank you all, we love you for what you’ve done for us. I’ve never had anybody do anything to this magnitude for myself, or even for my children,” Don says.

Thousands have been touched by Don’s story and have asked how to help. 

Humility is not thinking less of yourself, it’s thinking of yourself less. –C. S. Lewis


59 responses »

  1. You always come up with life stories that show the kindness and goodness in others. How amazing for this person to help out others in need. Bringing up children in this way and struggling would be heartbreaking for this father. A giant High Five to this wonderful Good Samaritan. An excellent quote picked for this piece too Beth – beautiful and thank you for sharing it. xx


  2. God bless Dan and his family, as well as the Good Samaritans of Michigan who stepped in so quickly to help with these so basic needs. Innate goodness, indeed, Beth. Thank you for sharing this warming story this morning.


    • thanks, and it is. a number of local people have offered him jobs, based upon his obvious work ethic, and provided him with a vehicle. i think he’ll be back on his feet before long, and see the world in a very different way.


  3. As encouraging and heartwarming as this is . . . I wonder who’s helping the people who did not make the news, who toil and struggle in anonymous desperation.

    It’s easy to connect with Don’s personal story since we readily identify with other individuals, but may I suggest . . .

    Most utilities have programs to help those who cannot pay. It can be as easy as rounding up your bill to the nearest dollar every month, to regular donations through your bill, to outright one-time donations.

    You might not find your very own Don, but for very little effort you might be able to help a number of them.


  4. Magnificent story of humanity that warms our hearts! I love the grateful receiver, using that wonderful word: magnitude! His family deserved some help, we all appreciate this featured story, Beth! Smiles, Robin


  5. I just invited you to join us at a Picnic, Beth! Don’t have to accept but I nominated you for the Sunshine Award! I took my all of two hours to get this written, so know how you just wrote your Awards of 2013 post and totally understand how appreciative you can be! Smiles, Robin


  6. Wow, this is certainly a touching story. That is so sad that he was having to care for his children in these conditions. Definitely puts things into perspective. Also, I think it goes to show that people are often more than willing to help and provide for needs when they see an opportunity in front of them that is tangible.


  7. When we see the news and it’s daily litany of disaster, murder and war it’s easy to think that’s all there is. But there’s a well of human kindness and generosity out there that never seems to flag. Without the kindness and support of lots of people who didn’t know me or my blog last year, I doubt I’d have survived the death of my wife. People were, are, remarkable in their generosity and I’m glad Don has experienced it and others have witnessed it. It gives you hope for the human race after all.
    xxx Huge Hugs xxx


    • thank you david, and you are so right. people are what make all the difference in our lives and i’m happy they’ve been there for you and helped to pull you through this very difficult time.


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