Alabama Man Who Mows Lawns for the Elderly and Veterans, Now Delivering Free Meals Too
Helping those in need is a way of life for Rodney Smith Jr. Through his organization, Raising Men Lawn Care, Smith has been mentoring and recruiting local youth to take care of lawns for the elderly, disabled, single mothers, and veterans in the Huntsville, Alabama community since 2015. His good work has even caught the eye of Queen Elizabeth.
Even with most of America locked down amid the coronavirus crisis, Smith has continued to mow lawns free of charge. Only now, he’s also started delivering food and supplies.
“People have been donating money for hand sanitizer, fresh fruit, water, toilet paper, and other items for those who can’t get outside of their house,” Smith told AL.com. “I mow lawns, drop (food and supplies) off and go.”
But not before using a selfie stick to take a photo with the happy recipients.
Nationwide, 710 boys and girls are currently signed up for Smith’s 50 Yard Challenge, AL.com reports. Participants earn a different-colored T-shirt for each 10 lawns they mow. Once they reach the 50-lawn mark, they receive their own mower, weed eater, and leaf blower.
"My mission is to encourage kids to get out there and give back to their community," Smith told ABC News in 2017. "I tell people all the time, if they are able, they can make a difference, and my way of making a difference is with a lawnmower."
With his ninth “50 States, 50 Yards” tour, in which he mows his way through all 50 states, postponed due to the COVID-109 crisis, Smith told AL.com that will be staying close to home for now. “I’m just mowing and doing what I love to do best: helping others,” he said.
As for the elderly people he visits? They are “doing well,” he said. “They know this, too, shall pass, and things will get better.”