The importance of building relationships is a necessary part of the human experience. It isn’t a selfish matter, either. Supporting each other is the most effective way to maintain community morale and boost everyone’s spirits. When the task requires boosting community spirits, few men are more adept than Ty Burningham.
Colloquially known as the “Mayor of Davis County,” Ty goes around and greets the people in his community daily. But walking around everywhere can take its toll. So for Ty’s 25th birthday, a group of boys from the Davis High School got together and bought him a scooter. Many members of their community showed up when they gave it to him and Ty was overjoyed!
Be sure to reach the end of this article to see the full video 🙂
Despite having no official title, Ty is commonly referred to as the “Mayor of Davis County.” Every day he walks the streets, greeting everyone he sees and helping where he can. He almost never takes a day off. Even on the hottest or rainiest days, Ty will still be seen checking on his neighbors and surveying the community. Ty has special needs. Thus, he does not own a car. Further, his family is not abundantly wealthy, so he does not even have a bike. While Ty doesn’t mind walking, it can be a slow process given the distances he often covers.
Being a local celebrity, many people know and love Ty. A group of his fans happens to be a gaggle of teenagers from the local Davis High School. They saw him walking every day and banded together to see if they could help out their friend. They knew Ty’s 25th birthday was soon, and they decided this was the perfect opportunity. One boy summed it up, saying “You know, just all of us combined, we just pitched in $10. It’s not that big, but Ty, we just love him.”
The group pooled their cash together and bought Ty a brand new scooter. They got him a very nice one with plenty of power and range for his daily excursions. Ty was easy to find on his birthday, so they all gathered him up and told him they had a surprise for him. While one boy covered Ty’s eyes, they led him across the road to his new scooter. A large group from the town had gathered, and many had made signs and cakes. It was a big celebration.
Counting down from three, they revealed the scooter to Ty. “Oh Sweet!”, he yelled in happiness. They gave him a quick tour of the controls and then set him loose. He took off, finally free from the drudgery of walking twelve miles every day. Quaid Rasmussen, one of the organizers and funders, jokingly recounted, “We turned it on for him and he zipped up the street. We were worried he wasn’t going to come back!”
Ty’s excitement was clear. He kept saying “Sweet!” over and over and talking about how fast it is. He wasn’t sure how to accept the gift though, saying, “You guys aren’t gonna take it back, right? This is mine now?” You can tell how much the gesture meant to Ty. This is a fantastic reminder that even a small act of kindness can make a huge difference in someone’s life. The boys who funded this scooter were not rich by any means, but they cared about Ty and made it happen. They gave the local ambassador a reason to smile.
Seeing such an act of kindness from a group of high schoolers is a wonderful moment. When this video of local teenagers giving a surprise gift to a local special needs man was posted, it immediately went viral. We can see why! What’s your favorite story of a community coming together to take care of those in need? Tell us your stories and pass on this video!