Young girl's kind gesture to help Oxford Walmart employee sparks unlikely friendship

Ana Rivera Image
Friday, June 19, 2020
Walmart employee, little girl spark unlikely friendship
Walmart employee CJ Hart was touched when 8-year-old Ryleigh Livengood went out of her way to help him put up shopping carts.

OXFORD, N.C. (WTVD) -- They look different. They're from two different generations and from different backgrounds, but this is what friendship looks like.

"She'll be my friend until the end," said CJ Hart.

CJ works at Walmart in Oxford. One evening, he was wrapping up his shift trying to clear the carts from the parking lot as quickly as possible.

"I see this woman and her daughter gathering carts and pushing them to the cart door. They weren't just getting one row of carts. They were getting carts on carts," CJ said.

Tiffany Livengood and 8-year-old daughter Ryleigh wanted to help.

"It's not right to just leave carts out. It's not really nice. I asked my mom if we could help and then we started helping," Ryleigh said.

After the encounter, CJ posted on Facebook with the message, "I pray I see her again so I can bless her." A few days later-his prayers answered.

"I didn't know I was going to see them again. I didn't know when I was going to see them again. And I thought, 'hey, I need to show my appreciation,'" CJ said.

CJ found Ryleigh and her mom in the toy aisle-presenting her with a thank you card, stuffed with a $20 bill and a note - "your hard work meant a lot to me. I don't know you, but you're an angel."

"It choked me up a little bit because I didn't expect that. Ryleigh didn't expect that. She was just trying to be nice," Tiffany Livengood said.

A simple gesture in a world full of negativity - a sign of hope for the future.

"The fact that she didn't see race or anything. It was great. It was a great feeling. Such a small little girl with a big heart, it was great," CJ said.