A farmer in Alabama had a major effect on the lives of so many people in his community and no one knew it was him.
Hody Childress lived off his retirement savings, but about 10 years ago, he walked into the pharmacy in Geraldine, Alabama, and spoke to the owner, Brooke Walker.
Walker said he asked her then if there were people who couldn’t afford their prescription; unfortunately, there were several. So Childress gave Walker $100 to help cover medications for those who couldn’t afford it, but he had one stipulation for the money.
“He said, ‘Don’t tell a soul where the money came from — if they ask, just tell them it’s a blessing from the Lord,’” Walker told The Washington Post.
Every month, Childress, who spent his life in the small town, would give Walker $100 to help others until he became too weak to make the trip due to developing chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, BBC News reported.
Geraldine has fewer than 1,000 people living there, AL.com reported.
Childress, 80, died on New Year’s Day. When Walker found out about his passing, she decided to tell Childress’ family about his anonymous spread of goodwill.
Several hundred people were helped by his selflessness. Typically, two people a month who didn’t have insurance or the insurance wouldn’t cover the tab, were helped every month, the Post reported.
Walker didn’t know that one other person also knew of Childress’ pledge to help people.
He told his daughter Tania Nix that he had been giving the owner of the Geraldine Pharmacy $100 a month to help people. He didn’t even know who got the money once he gave it to Walker.
“I’m not sure exactly what inspired him to start taking $100 bills to the drugstore, but I do know that when my mom was sick, her medications were expensive,” Nix told the Post. “So maybe that had something to do with it.”
Her mother had been diagnosed with multiple sclerosis and died in 1999.
At Childress’ funeral earlier this month, the people who received his blessings shared stories of how he helped them in their time of need.
One woman said she couldn’t pay $600 for her son’s EpiPen.
Another woman who couldn’t pay when both she and her daughter needed medication, eventually came back and wanted to return the favor and help someone else.
Walker said others are also following in that woman’s and Childress’ footsteps, dropping off money at the pharmacy to cover prescriptions, so Walker started the Hody Childress Fund since his family wants to keep his spirit alive, the Post reported.
If you want to donate to the fund, Walker told AL.com that the best way to do so is by checks, addressed to the Hody Childress Fund. They can be sent to P.O. Box 158, Geraldine, Alabama, 35974.
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