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Richard Henegar, Jr. (left) and Jordan Addison on Ellen.
Congratulations to Ellen DeGeneres, who not only practices kindness herself, but also rewards it in others. In her latest example, the talk show host featured Richard Henegar, Jr., owner of a car repair shop in Roanoke, Virginia, who came to the aid of Jordan Addison, whose car had been vandalized by homophobic thugs. On the season premiere of Ellen, DeGeneres not only recognized Henegar's act of kindness toward Addison, but presented both young men with hefty checks.
As Elizabeth Harrington reported for Roanoke television station WDBJ7, the story of Henegar's kindness came to the fore in August.
The mechanic learned that Radford University student Jordan Addison's car had been vandalized at least four times between March and May.
"The first time there were some homophobic slurs keyed into the side of it," Addison told Harrington. The second time the vandals keyed the word "die" into the car.
Addison said that he believes he was targeted because he is gay. He was unable to afford the $2500 it would have cost just to fix the damage to the doors. Hence, for several months he had to drive the car replete with homophobic slurs.
When Henegar, the manager of Quality Auto Paint and Body Shop, heard of Addison's dilemma, he decided to do something.
"Once I saw the vandalism that was done to [the car] I said that's uncalled for," says Henegar.
Henegar and his colleagues spent 100 hours working on the car. In addition to repairing the damage, they added new tires, a new paint job, tinted windows, a new security system, and new stereo. The total cost was well over $10,000.
Ten Roanoke businesses contributed to the makeover.
When the car was presented to Addison, he was overcome. "It looks great," he said. "It hasn't looked that great the entire time I've had it."
The clip below reports on Addison's response to his newly refurbished car.
But the story, as heartwarming as it is, does not end here.
Ellen DeGeneres heard of Henegar's act of kindness and decided to highlight it on the season premiere of Ellen. She invited Addison and Henegar to appear on her show and then surprised them with another act of kindness.
In the clip below, DeGeneres welcomes the mechanic and the student to her show.