“Share the Love. Put People’s Needs Above Yours. Don’t be Selfish”

Good Samaritan Special Needs

On 6 October 2015, after Godfrey Coutto, a 21-year-old sociology student at McMaster University, got on a public bus in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada, he was surprised when a middle-aged man shook his hand and didn’t let go. Mr. Coutto said, “I was like, ‘Yo, what’s going on? Am I getting pranked or something?’ I wasn’t. I looked at him [and realized] he’s special needs.” The man was named Robert, and members of his family told media that he is deaf and has cerebral palsy. Mr. Coutto said, “This was my first time encountering such a thing. I was obviously freaked out, but I tried to understand his position. I thought, ‘You know what, I’m just going to allow it. I’ll let him do his thing. I’ll comfort him.’” He allowed Robert to hold his hand during the bus ride. A passenger snapped a photo and posted it on Facebook with this caption: “I don’t know if u can post this but I would liking to say thank you to the guy who was seating beside a special needs gentleman… He allowed him to hold his hand and find comfort well in a packed bus. It make my day when I see stuff like that.” The photo went viral. Facebook user Erin E Harvey saw the photo and wrote about Robert, “I’ve met him twice and he just hugs and high fives guys; people may be uncomfortable with that, but he’s just trying to be nice.” Mr. Coutto said, “To be honest I’m no role model, no hero, but I hope to inspire people from what I did. Share the love. Put people’s needs above yours. Don’t be selfish.” He added, “My mom has done everything for me. She actually deserves the whole world. She disciplined me a lot. My mom is my number one role model.”

For Further Information: Jenny Sung, “Hamilton man called a ‘hero’ for act of kindness to special needs man.” Global News (Canada). 9 October 2015


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