When Cory Grimes arrived at C&T Auto, he never imagined what would happen. This year Christmas came early for the single father.
Grimes works as a part-time dishwasher at High Plains Diner in Bennett where he struggles to make ends meet.
“I’ve got to do the prep, wash the dishes and make sure everything gets put away properly,” said Grimes.
He is a single dad originally from Eastern Plains in Colorado. Every month he fights dearly to manage work while caring for his seven-year-old son Jordan who is autistic.
Almost every dollar that he makes goes straight to bills and he is fortunate to have a minivan which his neighbor sold to him for $400 to help Grimes get back on his feet.
After his minivan broke down, Grimes along with his brother-in-law attempted to repair it with little luck.
“[I] pulled parts of the transmission down and pieces kind of fell out and we didn’t know what to do,” said Grimes.
The total cost of the parts and labor came out to be about $1500, and after five months of saving up, Grimes finally had enough for the repair.
When Grimes walked into C&T Auto, he left in shock. Although mechanic Chris Oakley fixed up his car, he just couldn’t find it in his heart to charge Grimes. After Oakley discovered Grime’s story, he made a conscious decision early on.
“It was his. Free to go,” said Oakley. He refused to charge Grimes even a dime.
“[I] went there with the cash in hand ready to go and they said no they didn’t want my money and Merry Christmas,” said Grimes.
This wasn’t the first time a hero mechanic did this. Earlier this year a mechanic repaired and delivered a car to a custodian in Utah who had a two hour bus and train commute to work.
“What he did was awesome. I never was expecting something like that before,”said Grimes.
“He’s trying to make ends meet out of nothing. And I just thought you know what, after you tell me that, there’s no use in charging somebody that that doesn’t have the money,” Chris said in an interview with Human Kind.
Grimes may never forget this act of kindness. He left C&T Auto with his $1500, a full tank of gas, and more hope for the future of both him and his family.
“Now I have money for Christmas. I can buy stuff for my son,” said Grimes, holding back tears while looking at his child.
This will be the first time in eleven years that Grimes will spend Christmas back home in Colorado. Back in June, he moved in with his sister and brother-in-law after over a decade of living in Iowa.
Grimes told reporters that he will be using a portion of the money on Christmas and to help him get a place of his own.