A 12-year-old boy in Utah received the surprise of a lifetime after his mailman’s plea on social media resulted in him receiving hundreds of books.
Mathew Flores, 12, loved to read but used to not have any books.
“I just usually read the newspaper,” Mathew told ABC 6.
When Sandy postal worker Ron Lynch discovered the 12-year-old looking through the junk bin, Mathew told him he was looking for something to read.
“A young man was standing here reading junk mail,” Lynch said. “Asked me if I had any extra.”
“It’s super fun and interesting," Mathew said about reading. "Plus, reading makes you smarter."
According to Lynch, Mathew told him that he read newspaper because he didn’t have any books at home.
“I asked him about going to the library,” the postal worker said, “and he said he couldn’t afford the bus pass.”
A bookworm himself, Lynch could not help but be moved by the situation.
"You know, I started reading at a very, very early age," Lynch said. "My mother instilled reading books in me … at 12 years old, he didn't want electronics. He didn't want to sit in front of the TV playing games all day. This kid just wanted to read."
So he decided to take action and posted a picture of Flores on Facebook along with a message imploring readers to buy him books.
"I was given many books as a child,” he wrote, “and it's time to help someone else. Please share and let's get him tons of reading material! Most kids his age want electronics! It's great to see his desire, and you should have seen him beam when I said I could help!”
What he initially thought would be a few books from his friends ended up being enough to fill a large bookshelf after his message went viral.
"You know, 10, 20, 30 of my friend's might give him some books," he said. "He might end up with 50 or 60 books.
"It's gone from there. I've heard from the U.K., from Australia, from India."
Soon, complete strangers were arriving on the boy’s doorstep to give him books.
"They said these are books for you, and I thought they were mistaken," Mathew said. "But they were for me."
Despite being his gifts, Mathew intends to share the hundreds of books he has received with other kids as well.
“I don’t even know,” the boy said. “I’m just super happy.”
Photo Credit: Facebook