Gastonia woman’s social media post about stranger’s act of kindness goes viral

Gastonia woman’s social media post about stranger’s act of kindness goes viral
Teewon Vaye is recognized after changing a stranger's tire on the side of I-85. (Source: Erica Usinger)

GASTONIA, N.C. (WBTV) - When her tire blew on the highway, Erica Usinger was not sure what to do, stranded on the side of I-85.

“I didn’t really expect for anyone to pull over,” she says. “Because I’ve been broken down a lot in my life, and no one’s ever pulled over before.”

But, someone did, this time. A man she now knows as Teewon Vaye.

“He didn’t even think twice about whether or not I was a good person,” she says. “He just saw that I was stopped, and helped me anyway.”

On his way home from work, Vaye stayed with Usinger for more than an hour, and when her and her mom’s spare tires were both flat, went the extra mile, in Usinger’s eyes.

“He was like, ‘We’ll just put my spare tire on,’” she says.

Usinger says they then went to the nearby gas station, where he filled both their flats.

“He was doing a lot more than I expected anyone to ever do.”

Overwhelmed, she went to Facebook, posting about this stranger’s act of kindness.

**Update- We have located him, his beautiful girlfriend Ling Ling McNeil-Dixon reached out to me. His name is Teewon...

Posted by Erica Christine Usinger on Friday, October 11, 2019

Then, a surprise. As of Monday night, that post received 28,000 shares.

Usinger says she offered Vaye money that night to pay for his dinner.

“He wouldn’t take it,” she says. “He actually just said the only thing he wanted us to do was to pay it forward if we saw someone else in need.”

And after all the social media shares Monday, Vaye sent Usinger a video: his two small children crawling around him, saying thank you for the acknowledgement, though he never expected it.

“I feel like if we can help a person in the smallest way possible, we all can make a difference in this world,” Vaye says in the video message.

Usinger hopes that message of kindness is heard.

“I think it shows that there are lots of good people in this world,” she says. “And this is what we should be applauding people for.”

Usinger adds, originally she just shared the social media post to thank Vaye, and possibly get the attention of his employer, which she now knows is Wells Fargo, to show what a kind person they have working for them.

She never expected the level of attention it has received.

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