After spending 10 hours cleaning up after protests, teen rewarded with car, college scholarship

A high-school graduate cleaned up his city following the protests, not expecting to be rewarded with a brand-new car and a college scholarship.

At 2 a.m. on Monday, Buffalo resident Antonio Gwynn Jr. started cleaning up broken glass and garbage left behind by those marching in solidarity against police brutality and anti-Black violence after the death of George Floyd, a Black man who died while in police custody in Minneapolis, Minn., on May 25.

The 18-year-old spent 10 hours making sure the streets were cleared for workers’ morning commutes the next day, CNN reports.

It didn’t take long for his neighbours, including Matt Block, to hear about his incredible act of kindness. As it turns out, Block was looking to get rid of his bright-red Mustang.

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“I couldn’t come to grips with selling it and this was a good way for me to get rid of it and know someone that gets it is going to appreciate it,” Block told WKBW-TV.

But the story gets even more special.

Gwynn’s mother sadly passed away in 2018. She drove a bright-red Mustang, just like the one Block was giving him.

When he realized the incredible coincidence, Gwynn said he “didn’t have any words,” and Block said it gave him “goosebumps,” they told CNN.

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Along with the free car, Gwynn also got a year of free auto insurance from local businessman Bob Briceland.

“I just felt compelled to help him out,” Briceland told WKBW-TV. “We just need to get together our whole city and show people how there’s so many good people here.”

Gwynn had planned to go to a trade school, and was saving up for college when he found out he got a full ride to Medaille College in Buffalo.

“I literally stopped, pulled over, and started crying. So did my great aunt. My little cousin did also,” Gwynn told the broadcast station, adding that he hopes to open his own car repair shop one day.

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“I always wanted to be someone to help everyone with their car problems,” he said. “This is a great opportunity I have right in front of me.”

meaghan.wray@globalnews.ca

© 2020 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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