Rodney Smith Jr. is not your average man. The amazing 29-year-old man made it his goal to mow lawns for veterans in all 50 states. Along his incredible journey, he met many incredible individuals, all while raising awareness for veterans and encouraging others to help those in need around them.
The Man Who Visited Veterans In All 50 States
Some people make it their life’s mission to help others – Rodney Smith Jr. is one of those people. This man took it upon himself to spread kindness and inspire others by completing a massive, heroic undertaking: he traveled to all 50 states and mowed veterans’ lawns for free!
This 29-year-old man wants to encourage others to do good. “I remember asking God to use me as his vessel,” he told ABC News, explaining how it began. It all started one day in 2015, as Smith Jr drove through his hometown of Huntsville, Alabama. While driving, he saw an elderly man desperately struggling to mow his lawn on his own. Smith Jr pulled over in order to help him. “That’s when I got my goal to mow lawns for free for the elderly, single moms, and veterans,” he said.
One Lawn At A Time
Smith Jr. immediately took it upon himself to help others mow their lawn, but he didn’t want to do it alone! He decided to recruit people, young and old, in his community, to help him on his mission. “We have boys and girls taking part in the program. We are trying to encourage boys and girls to get out there and make a difference, one lawn at a time.”
Eventually, in 2017, Smith Jr. decided to spread the word even further, going nationwide. So, he started the “50 Lawn Challenge.” The challenge went viral: it challenges participants to ask around and help those who struggle with yard work and mow 50 of their lawns. Then, they pass the challenge off to someone else!
Along with the challenge, Smith Jr. also started his own foundation, Raising Men Lawn Care Service, encouraging young people in their communities to go out there and help those who might struggle with their yard work. The foundation provides hats, shirts, and ear protection, and they can even earn their way to a free lawn mower! There are over 400 children in the entire country taking part, mowing lawns, and helping others.
However, Smith Jr. had another idea, one to bring even more attention to his charity and challenge…
“It’s The Last Thing They Need To Worry About”
Smith Jr. had one final idea to inspire others to help those who struggle. This year, he decided to help veterans and raise awareness of their needs and issues by traveling to all 50 states and mowing veterans’ lawns. Yes, even Alaska! Meanwhile, he’s uploading photos along his journey, spreading his cause even further. In fact, his cause reached the Twitter of Delta Airlines, who offered him free tickets to Hawaii and Alaska. The 29-year-old’s foundation, and the people he met through it, help him with travel costs and places to stay – sometimes it’s even the people he meets on the road, who offer to fill up his gas tank.
Smith Jr. sees his cause as a simple way to give back to those who served the country. “I’ve come across so many veterans that are struggling to get their lawn mowed. If they served for our country, we should step up for them. This is the least we can do. This is the last thing they need to worry about,” he said. And Smith Jr. is helping them not worry about these things. He even plans on besting his 50 states record. Next year, Smith Jr. wants to do a seven-continent tour, spreading the word all over the world!
As he said: “My true purpose in life is helping people.”