GREENVILLE, Mich. — A local motorcycle club paid it forward to some surprised shoppers standing in line at Meijer in Greenville on Sunday. The motorcycle club The Chosen Ones spent the day walking the grocery aisles looking for shoppers to surprise just in time for Christmas.
"In order to touch as many people as we could, we bought forty $50 gift cards," said club member Jerry "Bear" Cook. "We’ve had our crew out looking for folks who look as if though they may need a little extra help."
Members of the group surprised the unsuspecting shoppers with a gift card just as they entered the check out lines. It was a day full on hugs, smiles, and maybe even a few tears.
"It’s been amazing" said Cook. "At least two of the families I tapped on their shoulder said please don’t make me cry and it happened."
Tara Williams, a stay-at-home mom from Lakeview, was one of the shoppers given a gift card. "This guy came up to me and gave me a $50 Meijer gift card to help pay for groceries and Christmas presents," she said. "Hopefully I can pay it forward someday to help other people."
For Jessica Reway, this act of kindness couldn't have come at a better time. After just looking over bills, she says the extra money will help with groceries and finishing up Christmas shopping.
"Its amazing. It’s great to see that there are people out there that are paying it forward what they can do," said Reway.
"Our whole mission statement as far as our charity is to help kids and better the community through our children" says Cook.
And the group has done just that. The Choosen Ones are a 501(c) non-profit organization, and already this holiday season they have teamed up with the Lions Club of Greenville to help raise funds and distribute toys to children through the Carl Barberi Toy Project. They have also helped purchase over 200 backpacks for children heading back to school.
"All the folks that come to the club want to be part of the family the community," said Cook. "They choose our club usually because of stuff like this."
As the holidays approach, taking the time to see the joy in people's eyes is something that is touching to this group of bikers.
"My heart is full," says Cook. "Just to see all of my club brothers and sisters, the smiles on their faces as we are doing this, and we see the people light up when we give them the card and tell them Merry Christmas. Our hearts are very full."
The Chosen Ones clubhouse is open every Friday night at 4772 S. Lake Road in Greenville. Doors open at at 7 p.m. for the public to visit. Donations are also welcome to assist with the groups charity efforts.