No matter if it was raining or the sun was beating down at over 100 degrees, an elderly man could be seen at the same street corner in Phoenix, Arizona. The old man rested under the ugly fluorescent lights from a Church’s Chicken restaurant. He stood there using their light until the joint closed down for the night. And at that time, no one knew where the old man went. But the old man was there for a purpose. He may be hunched over his walker, but he was determined. And anyone who was courageous enough to step up to him would see the sign that reads “copper coins for sale.” He was just part of the background.
But the old man had a name. It was Paul Lomax. He was a constant ornament on the Phoenix streets. Because he was a normal sight, people would drive right past him never thinking twice about the broken old man under the chicken restaurant light. And although the Phoenix summer heat was devastating, they never thought to ask him why he was out there selling his copper coins.
But on one evening, Lisa Fandrich, opened her heart to the old man. She had seen him pushing a wheelchair and a walker simultaneously. And this sight broke her heart and compelled her to do the right thing.
“This is Paul and it breaks my heart that he is working this hard at his age. Can we help him?” she writes on a GoFundMe page she created later to give this man a hand. “For months I have driven past this man. He comes to the corner of Cactus and 32nd Street after dark each night.”
Because Lisa knew that Paul always spent his time on the street in the exact same spot, she knew how to reach him. And she eventually pulled together the courage to approach the old man and ask him his story.
Paul let her snap a photo of him that she could use to advertise the GoFundMe page she decided to create for him.
Because she listened, Paul told her his story. Along with her open heart, she brought two bottles of water and $10.
Paul told her that he had come to Phoenix 37 years ago. Now he and his wife have nothing except their small social security check.
And every night he walks to the corner to sell coins to support his wife of 54 years. He vows to sell coins until Church’s Chicken closes up shop.
Lisa admitted to Paul that she was worried about him. His answer was powerful.
Lisa was impressed. Although he was old, he was dedicated to his wife’s wellbeing.
She wrote, “ Even in the heat of the stifling Phoenix summers, he is here. Working. For he and his wife. I asked Paul which 2 coins he likes the most and he showed me these two. So those I bought.”
Now people are helping Paul through GoFundMe. Any little bit helps him support his wife.