Jourdan Duncan was finally growing used to walking 14 miles everyday between work and home. His 2001 Volvo bit the dust a few months before, and without the substantial funds needed to get the car back on the road, Duncan was forced to walk. “To me, it was like a challenge to see if I was willing to do whatever it takes to get to work,” he said in an interview with The Washington Post.
It was during one of these late night commutes that Cpl. Kirk Jefferson of the Benicia, California Police Department spotted Duncan walking alone while on patrol. “Usually in the industrial area there’s no foot traffic, so it was kind of weird to see someone walking around on foot,” Keffer told The Post.
Keffer pulled up alongside Duncan to see if he could offer any assistance. After Duncan explained his situation, Keffer told him to hop in the passenger seat for a ride home. Duncan gladly accepted.
On the ride home, Keffer took the opportunity to get to know the teenager. The recent high school graduate was working on an industrial packaging line every day from 3pm to midnight. Duncan admitted that while he liked his coworkers, he had dreams of attending college and one day becoming a California Highway Patrolman.
In that moment, Keffer knew he had to help Duncan achieve his dreams.
Keffer put a motion forward at the next Benicia Police Officers’ Association meeting to buy the young man a new bike. A $500 budget was quickly approved and new bike handed over to the grateful young man.
Duncan’s 2+ hour commute had been cut in half, but this teenager’s dream had just begun to come true.
A few days after Duncan’s story began to go viral on the internet, the police association started a GoFundMe account to raise money for Duncan’s car repair. The $5,000 budget was met within hours and within a few days had raised more than $42,000 for young Duncan and his future.
Duncan bought a sensible car for $2,900 and is currently enrolled in community college while finishing his basics. He will enroll in a four year school soon then set his sights on the State Highway Patrol.
Even with several year’s perspective, Duncan can’t believe that so many strangers came together for someone they’d never even met.
Keffer summed things up perfectly, “I’m just super proud of [Duncan]. He could have went so many different ways with that money,” Keffer said. “He stopped and asked for my opinion, which meant a lot. … He’s got a bright future ahead of him. I just hope that he continues down this path.”
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