A homeless couple in Nashville says an anonymous donation gave them the shock of their lives. While selling newspapers, they received a life-changing donation so great it may help them off the streets.
Stephen Gilland and Edie Puckett became vendors for the newspaper Faith Unity Out Loud about eight months ago. It's a new newspaper that, much like The Contributor, benefits the homeless community. One paper costs $1 and vendors are allowed to take home what they make.
The couple uses their earnings to pay rent at a motel, and each day is hit or miss.
"Most people, when you sell the homeless papers, they drive by you. They don't even want to look at you," Puckett said.
So, last week, they thought nothing of it when a man to whom they had sold papers a couple times before offered to take them out to lunch and gave them a check for a single paper.
"He said it was $200. I went home and put it in a drawer," Puckett said.
Neither Gilland nor Puckett actually looked at the check until a few hours later, when Puckett finally opened it up and couldn't believe what she saw.
"I got sick, was my reaction," Puckett said.
"That's when she yelled out, 'It's $10,000! It's not $200, it's $10,000.' I didn't know. I thought I was having a heart attack or something," Gilland said.
It was the real deal - a check for $10,000. The couple soon cashed it and kept a copy.
"It made me cry. It made me thank God," Puckett said.
Before, if the couple didn't make $45 in a single day to pay for a hotel, they'd have to sleep outside. Now, with this donation from a man they hardly know, they plan to buy a motorhome.
"He saw me through God's eyes - not through the eyes of the person - and thanks to him, I'm not homeless anymore," Puckett said.
The man who gave the couple the check wished to remain anonymous. The newspaper Faith Unity Out Loud is funded through Global Vision Church in Mount Juliet.
Gilland and Puckett said they will keep selling the paper to help pay their bills.
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