A Louisianna supermarket employee has restored our faith in humanity after noticing an autistic boy’s interest in re-stocking shelves and allowing him to do the job himself.
Sid Edwards and his son Jack Ryan Edwards, 17, were in their local Rouses Market in Baton Rouge when Jack, who is on the autistic spectrum, took a keen interest in the work that one of the store clerks was completing. Edwards said that his son was utterly mesmerized by the task of restocking a fridge with juice, watching intently as the employee filled up the fridge.
When 20-year-old Jordan Taylor noticed Jack’s fascination, he reached out to the boy.
“Something in the back of my mind was just like, ‘ask if he wants to help you,’” Taylor explained to WAFB-TV.
WATCH: Baton Rouge supermarket employee Jordan allowed Jack Ryan, who has autism, to help him stock shelves for more than 30 minutes when he showed an interest in the task. Jack Ryan's grandfather called the kind gesture "a miracle in action." pic.twitter.com/2TBcm38AZU
— NBC Nightly News with Lester Holt (@NBCNightlyNews) July 31, 2018
So, for a good half hour, Jack and Ryan stacked the refrigerator up with juice. It might seem like a relatively small task, but it was a “big deal,” to Ryan, the young man’s dad explained.
According to the National Autistic Society, engaging in repetitive behavior can be “a source of enjoyment” and “a way of coping with everyday life” for those on the autistic spectrum. Such activities may be done to gain or reduce sensory input, or as a means to “deal with stress and anxiety and block out uncertainty.” Those with autism may also actively seek out such tasks to simply “pass the time and provide enjoyment,” according to the society.
Delaney Edwards Alwosaibi, Sid’s daughter, later posted the video to Facebook, along with the following message:
“Talk about a stand up young man!!!! My dad took Ziggy [Jack] to Rouse’s yesterday and apparently he was interested in stocking the shelves. We all know autism makes going out difficult, and sometimes grocery stores can be a challenge. This young man took the time to slow down and allow Jack Ryan to help for over 30 minutes, guiding him as he finished his task.
He could have ignored him. He could have made an excuse and said he couldn’t allow him to help. Instead, he let him have his moment and in turn gave my family a moment we will never forget.
It might seem like nothing to others, but as you can hear my dad say in the video, ‘I’m watching a miracle right now.’ Let’s find out who ‘Jordan’ at Rouse’s on Drusilla is and hook him up with something awesome.”
Alwosaibi even set up a GoFundMe campaign for Taylor, which has already raised over $3,000.
“May God bless you and your kindness be returned 10 fold,” one person commented on the campaign page.
“What an amazing young man – in a world where social media is crammed with young people doing stupid, ignorant and disrespectful things, we need more like you!” wrote another.
According to WAFB, Alwosaibi later went back to the store to meet Jordan in-person.
“To me, I’ve always heard the things people do when no one is watching is their true character and you didn’t know how many people were going to end up seeing you do that, you just did it out of the kindness of your heart,” she told him.
Jordan’s mother, Teresa Taylor, said that she wasn’t one bit surprised that her son behaved the way he did.
“That’s always been his nature,” she told WAFB. “I was extremely proud.. really, really proud.”