Have you ever seen a kid get excited about a new lawnmower? If you answered no, that means you haven’t met Ethan Reynolds.
This 11-year-old from Columbus, Indiana, has a heart of gold. Although very young, Ethan has already helped tons of people in need. The kid has volunteered at his local nursing home and animal shelter, and he’s constantly looking for more ways to serve his community.
So instead of wishing for toys or video games last Christmas, Ethan asked for a lawnmower so he could start his own lawn care service business. But it wasn’t to make a profit; it was for a purpose bigger than himself.
When the coronavirus pandemic hit, the fifth-grader saw many people in the streets holding up signs asking for food. Ethan couldn’t bear the thought of just sitting around and doing nothing to help them, so he thought of a brilliant plan.
Taking $10 from his own pocket, Ethan told his mom, Jessica Reynolds, that he would use it to buy necessities and give them away to those in need.
The kid bought as many nonperishable food and hygiene items as he could. He then set up a table on their front lawn, put everything he got on it, and displayed a sign that read “Free Food.”
Known as “Ethan’s Table,” the mini structure holds items such as canned meats, vegetables, protein bars, fruit, tuna, toiletries, bottled water, and more. It’s open from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. daily except when the weather is bad. It offers people the option to take whatever they need.
Ethan started the project in early April, and since then, many strangers have dropped off cash and food donations after seeing his story in the local news and social media.
“I’m feeling pretty emotional about just how kind people can be,” Ethan said.
As Ethan’s Table gained traction, the youngster started his own lawn care service business to make money for himself and his newly founded charity. Knowing that their payment will benefit those in need, his neighbors were more than happy to have him mow their lawns!
Although Ethan helps everyone out, he paid particular attention to an elderly resident in his neighborhood who lives alone. He keeps sure his lawn is maintained and always checks him to make sure he’s okay amid the quarantine.
However, Ethan’s equipment is not as good as it used to be. It kept breaking down in the middle of jobs, making it harder for him to complete his tasks. When his neighbors noticed, they decided to pitch in and buy him a new push mower.
When Ethan came home and saw his new gear in the driveway, he got so excited that he literally fell to the ground!
After recovering from his shock, he said the red mower was “rad” and gave it a test run.
It’s safe to say we’ve never seen a young person get excited over a lawnmower, but Ethan is no ordinary kid!
Jessica is one proud mother and says her son has always been this way.
“He’s been doing this kind of stuff for a long time now,” she said. “When we would have garage sales, he (at age 7) would go to his room and get his candy and all of his little toys. And he would put them in boxes and offer them to other kids for free.”
Jessica encouraged him to volunteer because she wanted to make sure he was “good-hearted.”
And seeing how much Ethan has been helping his community, Jessica certainly succeeded with that goal.
Indeed, Ethan is a one-of-a-kind youth. May the world breed more generous and compassionate youngsters like him.
See Ethan’s reaction upon seeing his new lawnmower in the video below. Inspire kindness in others by sharing this story!