Avery Huddleston wanted to celebrate turning seven by collecting school supplies for students in Puerto Rico instead of asking for presents for himself. But the gifts from the little boy from Illinois led to an even bigger surprise for those kids in Puerto Rico when workers who delivered the box turned power back on at the school.
The elementary school, La Escuela Rafael de Jesus, had been without power since Hurricane Irma hit on September 5, 2017. And when workers who were in the area trying to restore power delivered the package to the school, they saw some lights on in the mostly dark school, so Ameren utility worker Mike Beardsley figured out what the problem was, made the repairs, and the whole school lit up for the first time in five months.
“If it wasn’t for one kind gesture by Avery, a little seven-year-old boy, they’d still be sitting in the dark at this school,” Beardsley says. But he’s just being modest because without his hard work and willingness to go the extra step, those students would have Avery’s supplies, but they’d still be learning in the dark.