Pay it Forward: John Gray

May 12, 2017 03:18 PM

(ABC 6 News)--An Austin man has been volunteering his time for many years and despite recently losing his wife his work for others continues. 

“She was always 100% supportive of what I did,” says John Gray, this week’s ABC 6/Home Federal Bank "Pay it Forward" recipient.


John is talking about his wife, Terry who passed away in February. He says it is rewarding giving back and helping those in need.

John has been living in Austin for the past 62 years, but says the way he grew up molded how he would give back to his community.

“I was brought up in a family that was on welfare, so I can appreciate the help that’s there for the families,” John said.

John has volunteered his time to various organizations including the Salvation Army, The Arc Mower County, Vision 2020 and United Way of Mower County, to name a few.

“Well I was involved in 11 organizations at one time, but I cut it back to eight,” said John.

Eric Connett serves on the Salvation Army’s Advisory Board with John and says there’s no question John deserves the Pay it Forward award.

“The man gives all that he has and then he finds others to fill in the backfill. What he can’t offer, he finds others that can,” Connett said.

John’s role in the community is the reason Terry Miller nominated him for this week’s ABC 6 News Home Federal Bank Pay it Forward award.

“Now he wants to give back to those programs and that’s why he’s so active in what he does,” said Terry.

“If everybody could step up and help where their heart takes them, our community would be so much better off and the need is there. Now that my wife is gone, now I even more so need to stay busy. It is just great and very self-satisfying to help out,” John said.

John says he will be splitting the money. Half of it will be going to the Austin Salvation Army and the other half to The Arc Mower County. 

For more Pay it Forward stories or to nominate someone that you feel is deserving of $600, click here


Marissa Collins

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