Graduation is a time for students to celebrate their achievements and walk across the stage. But for one student at George Mason Elementary in Richmond, Virginia, that opportunity might have been missed on Wednesday, had it not been for one teacher’s act of kindness.
Vohn Lewis, a substitute teacher known as 'Mr. Lewis' at the school, noticed a fifth grader’s parent and guidance counselor searching in vain for supplies to fix one student’s broken shoe so he could proceed to graduation.
That's when he acted.
“I wasn’t thinking. I just moved with my heart,” Lewis said. The teacher told the 5th grader they wear the same shoe size and took off his shoes.
“You don’t have to do all that,” Lewis told the adults, “I wear a size 10 and he can wear my shoes.”
Lewis was working in a fourth grade class the day of the ceremony. Temporarily without footwear, Lewis said he sat down until the graduation and recession was over.
“I was patient because I went through graduation and I understand the importance of being involved,” Lewis said.
The school took notice of his act of kindness, saying Lewis is often observed encouraging students from all grade levels.
“He demonstrates my mantra “Children First!”,” Principal Rose Ferguson said in a statement, “He serves with a true heart of passion! We’re not surprised at his actions on yesterday and we’re proud to have him as part of the Mason Family!!”
Lewis’ act of kindness went viral on Facebook.
A post by Bradley Cook Kopelove had over 80 shares on Thursday. The post thanked the teacher for looking out for the boys.
Lewis said he didn’t know he’d get recognition, especially from Superintendent Jason Kamras.
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“At first, it was kind of shocking cause I do this stuff all the time so when I get recognition, I’m not used to it. I’m still shocked at it all,” Lewis said.
The teacher said he was only thinking about the student at the time.
“People will never forget how you make them feel,” Lewis said, “Character is so important in life, you should always be willing to give and always willing to be a blessing to someone else.”