MEMPHIS, TN (WMC) - A South Memphis teen is getting an outpouring of support from people who heard about the challenges he faces and the way he's trying to overcome them.
Matt White posted a story to Facebook on June 10 about an experience he had at the Kroger on Highland Street.
"I didn't think it could happen, but it did," White wrote on his Facebook page. "I'm 30 years old and I have a new hero. And he's 16. His name is Chauncy Jones Black, and last week, by God's beautiful design, he met me."
White said Black asked if he could help take White's groceries to his car in exchange for some doughnuts.
"He had me at doughnuts," White wrote.
White said what happened next is one of his most cherished experiences in life. After spending some time with Black and learning his personal story and struggle, White decided to try and help him.
Black told White that his mother has disabilities and that he works hard to make ends meet to better their lives.
According to White's post, which has now been shared thousands of times, "(Black) is a straight-A student who is doing his best to make it in a world with no money and very few resources. He wants to work and help his mother financially. He wants to become a successful business owner and offer jobs and opportunities to others in his community. What so many can take for gr anted, he wants. He wants food; he wants a bed; he wants to work and he wants a chance."
Several other people who claim to be related to Black said the story is not completely true. They said Chauncy lives with his grandmother, who does receive money every month from the government due to her disability. They said she doesn't use that money the right way.
Family members said they are worried that money and gifts given to Chauncy will actually end up going to his grandmother and being wasted.
Since meeting Black, White created a GoFundMe page called "Chauncy's Chance" to help raise money for Black and his grandmother. The page has raised more than $17,000.
White created the page hoping that money will go to the family's basic needs and to buy Black a lawn mower so he can start working to earn his own money.
People who posted to the GoFundMe page offered things like a lawnmower, beds, furniture, clothing, and more to help Chauncy and his grandmother.
On Tuesday, White wrote:
"God is so mysterious and beautiful to me. The fact that I get to see any of His work taking place, that we get to live in the front seat of His power and love, spreading across the world, is such an honor to me. I have had more people emailing me from all over the world just to tell me how inspired they are by Chauncy's story. It's changing people's lives!!!! I just want to thank everyone and tell you all how wonderful you truly are. You are all family to me."