Though it may seem harmless at first the teasing and ridicule children put each other through can be awfully traumatizing. From an early age, most kids just want to find a way to fit in and when they can't, it can be devastating. What's worse, is that when a child visibly doesn't fit in (whether it's the color of their hair or the clothes they wear), they become an instant target for teasing or bullying.
For 11-year-old Richard Burell, his tattered shoes were the source of his ridicule. "They said my shoes look raggedy and I shouldn't be playing with them," said Burell to KWWL, recalling his attempt to join in on a basketball game. As a result, Burell was excluded and left to feel like a social outcast, every child's worst nightmare.
However, that's when 13-year-old Shaylynn Hampton decided to help Burell out. Seeing the boy sitting out by himself, Hampton (an avid sneaker collector) decided to gift Burell a pair of LeBron James' $200 signature shoes.
"I felt bad because when I was his age, I got made fun of and I didn't like that," Hampton said to WDRB. "So to stop that feeling for someone else, it made me feel good." For Shaylynn, it was just a nice thing to do. "They were clean and like brand new," she said, "I didn't have anything to use them for." "I didn't think it would turn out to be such a big deal. I was just trying to be nice," said a modest Shaylynn.
Though the 13-year-old may not think so, her small gesture of kindness means so much more. "I cried for hours and I couldn't stop. I couldn't believe that a 13-year-old actually stopped someone bullying my child," said Richard's mother Amanda Gardner.