As the young man searched the North Carolina Target for the right clip-on tie, one of the men working there noticed him and asked him if he needed help. Instead of pointing the teen toward the section of ties and walking on, the Target employee, identified by the company as Dennis, stopped and saw a kid who could use a little advice from a dude who had been around the block a time or two.
So he took the kid over to the big-boy ties, not the clip-on ones, showed him how to tie it properly and reviewed a few standard interview questions with him.
Dennis' act of kindness was captured by someone at the store and is circulating online.
One Facebook commenter, John Lynch, summed up the scene beautifully: "This is what a man teaches his son! But a good man teaches anyone's son!"
Target says the picture was snapped at their Raleigh, North Carolina store and that the woman employee pictured with Dennis is named Cathy.
"Our team members love going above and beyond every day for our guests," Kristen from Target told SheKnows. "Dennis and Cathy from Raleigh, North Carolina are just two of the countless team members who help make Target uniquely Target. We’re rooting for him in his interviews, and by the way, we love his tie."
Now, we don't know if the kid has a father at home or not. Doesn't matter, really. This image is a nice reminder that it really does "take a village," in Hillary Clinton's so-often-quoted words. Kids need and deserve a whole community of support that extends beyond their home.
It's also likely not lost on anyone that the teenage boy is black and the Target employee is a middle-aged white dude. With so many instances of injustice and violence against our young black men in the headlines over the past months, it's a nice reminder that there are people like this man who are able to look beyond racist stereotypes and see instead in front of him a kid who needed someone to get him ready to face the world as a man.
Yesterday would have been Trayvon Martin's 20th birthday. And while the tragic loss of Trayvon's life will always be on the conscience of our country, let's hope more scenes like this will also be part of his legacy.
Let's all find a way to just look up and see the people all around us who might just need a minute of our time and a moment of kindness. You never know how far a small thing like that can go. Just a little something I learned from a guy at Target.
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