While on the job a few weeks ago, railroad track inspector Josh Cyganik of Union Pacific overheard two teenagers talking about an old man's house across the street. The same old man he would say "hi" to every day for four years.
"They said loud enough for me to hear 'look at this crappy house, they just need to burn it down!' " Cyganik wrote in a Facebook post about the incident. The older man, 75-year-old Leonard Bullock, sits on his porch every day and could definitely hear the teens.
"I saw the look on Leonard's face. I could tell the comment bothered him. I don't think any elderly person should have to endure what I heard from those two kids' mouths. I kind of stewed about it for a couple days before I decided to do something," he told UPRR.
That something? Paint the house — and that's exactly what he did.
After getting permission from Leonard to paint the house, Idaho-based Cyganik asked Brian Christensen at Tum-A-Lum Lumber if he'd donate paint for the job and he agreed. Then on July 15, Cyganik posted a status to Facebook explaining what happened and his plan, calling on friends nearby to volunteer is possible to help repaint the run-down home.
"So I'm asking if anyone that wants to help this Saturday to volunteer their time to help paint this gentleman's house!" he wrote.
It was shared of 6,000 times since.
When Saturday rolled around, more than 100 volunteers showed up throughout the day.
When they finished, Cyganik posted the progress (and finished) photos on Facebook for all to see.
He wrote a message to show his gratitude:
"Well we all made it through the day! Every thing turned out awesome! I want to thank the people who donated everything for Leonards home not house! and all the people that showed up to help out!!! I also want to thankBrian Christensen for all he did with helping out from Tum a Lum Lumber!!!!! And all the other people that showed up I thank you so very much!!!! And to everyone else that made food and came out and stood in the Sun! Thank you everybody for the overwhelming support I sure appreciate it and it's been awesome! And a big thank you from me!!!
No, thank YOU, Josh.
Though it was an act of kindness, Cyganik feels it was just the right thing to do.
"...To me it's more about respect," he told PIX11. "I was raised to respect the people who came before you, to help others out who don't have much. Leonard can now sit on his front porch for the rest of his years while feeling good about his home."
It's amazing what one small gesture can turn into.
Enjoy your gorgeous-looking home, Leonard!
Check out the before and after photos: