The power of community support and compassion shone brightly last week in a heartwarming tale from Amarillo, Texas that restores hope in humanity. Shayden Walker, a young boy searching for friendship, found solace when he turned to his neighbor’s doorbell for help. Brennan Ray, answering the call, listened attentively as Walker poured out his heart to him.
With a brave voice, Walker said, “Hi. I just wanted to see if you knew any kids around like, 11 or 12, maybe, because I need some friends. Like, really bad.”
Ray guided Walker towards a neighboring house where some children lived. “So the house to your right, there’s two kids that live there,” he stated.
However, Walker confessed, “Well, umm, they’re not my friends anymore because they’re bullies to me.”
“I’m sorry about that, man,” Ray said.
Curiosity led Walker to ask Ray if he had any kids and he was told that the responsive neighbor has a two-year-old. In response, Walker lightened up, stating that he loves two-year-olds.
That’s great. I actually … I love two-year-olds, to be honest. They’re just like the most cutest things I have ever known,” he stated, causing Ray to chuckle.
Walker also shared that he “used to have” a two-year-old sister and that he enjoyed spending time with her.
After asking for his name, Ray promised to say hi to the little boy when he sees him.
While that was the end of the video shared, the short encounter had an impact on Ray who went on to share to his TikTok account.
“It takes 2 seconds to make someone’s day; you never know what people are going through until you get a chance to talk to them. This young man is well-mannered, kind, and brave,” the new dad wrote.
Inspired by Walker’s story, Ray and his wife, Angel, decided to take action and created a GoFundMe page to help Shayden find the companionship he yearned for. The response to the video was overwhelming, with the GoFundMe page successfully raising more than $37,000.
Neighbors have helped raise more than $37,000 on GoFundMe for a bullied Texas boy who went viral after a heart-wrenching video showed him knocking on their door and asking if they knew any kids his age because he “needs some friends really bad.” pic.twitter.com/83YIWWZzmo
— Wezz oF West (Wasiu)💹📉📈 (@only1wezz) July 8, 2023
According to the couple, the funds gathered will go directly to Walker’s family and will be used to purchase a gaming system, school clothes, and other things Walker needs to have memorable experiences. The initiative also aims to raise awareness about the painful realities of bullying, an issue that too many children face, and promote suicide prevention.