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Friday, April 16, 2010

CSXT workers bring smile to boy's face with new bike

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They came to town to repair our railroad tracks. And in the process, they fixed our beliefs in humanity, the Middletown, Ohio, Journal reports.

On April 14, Levi Hensley, a fifth-grader at Amanda Elementary School, saw CSX Transportation workers ripping up railroad tracks near his house and, being 100 percent boy, he had to watch.

When the CSXT workers - who live from Michigan to Miami - met Levi, they struck up a casual conversation and asked why the 11-year-old was riding a girl's bike. He lowered his head and mumbled the bike belonged to his aunt and his bike was stolen.

Hearing this, some of us would have thought, "That's what you get for leaving your bike, kid."

The story could have ended here, but, as Chris Brigman, a CSXT worker from Rockingham, N.C., said: "No kid should be unhappy. That's just not right."

So Brigman and fellow employee, Curtis Chesnut, from London, Ky., purchased a blue Power Climber mountain bike from Walmart, and delivered it to Levi at his house.

When Brigman and Chesnut discussed the bike at a morning meeting, 70 railroad workers - some who wouldn't know Levi from a pair of jeans - said they wanted to pay for the $106 bike. One dollar, 45 cents each. One endless smile.

"Awesome," Levi said when asked about his new bike.

Richard Riley, 60, praised the workers for stepping up and helping his grandson. "What they did," Riley said, patting his nephew's head, "was absolutely wonderful."

Levi can feel secure knowing his bicycle will stay put; the workers also included a lock with the bike. "This one ain't going nowhere," he said.

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