By on June 14, 2017

Wheelchair van, Image: David Willman/Bigstock

Our Saturn Vue Hybrid decided to spring another leak recently, resulting in a jammed belt tensioner and a torn CV boot. Each of the repairs started with a laundry list of required specialty tools, making improvisation and irritation a common theme over the past few days.

While last night’s repair session resolved almost all of the Vue’s issues, as midnight approached I realized there was another leaky seal which I had not purchased. I was happy to have made some progress but irritated at being unable to finish the job completely — which meant we would have to juggle cars for another day. I walked into the house, tired and angry, and went online to check out the latest on the r/JustRolledIntoTheShop subreddit while I ate a late-night snack.

JRITS is a good subreddit for reading shop and repair stories that range from funny to infuriating. I saw a few posts and comments from people who were in predicaments similar to mine, but one comment led me to a post that showed me just how insignificant my issues were and that there are still lots of generous people out there.

The post centered on a wheelchair user with cerebral palsy who found himself facing a hardship: he was not able to fix the blown motor in his van. He has a YouTube channel under the user name handheldgamefan89, where he has been reviewing vintage video games for the last seven years. The channel only had 1,300 subscribers. After posting a video asking for some help to get his van’s engine repaired, his appeal for automotive assistance quickly skyrocketed in views once someone shared it on Reddit.

His family had already created a GoFundMe campaign to collect a few thousand dollars to complete the repair, but the Reddit share really helped get the donations flowing. As of this morning they have surpassed the original goal, but the best parts of the post were seeing all of the redditors who offered other forms of assistance or encouraging comments.

Watch even a few minutes of his recent videos and you’ll see how genuinely happy he is knowing that people care. It is enough to bring a tear to the eye of even the most hardened person out there. The JRITS community has gone out of their way to help him keep as much of the donations as possible, with many offering parts and labor to get his van going again. One dealership owner, who goes by the name Tritonv8guy, has gone above and beyond by ordering an engine, transporting the van to his shop to repair it, and even finding the family a backup van.

The post showed me that my car issues were minuscule in the grand scope of things, but more importantly it showed me there is still some goodness in this online world of bickering. People are still willing to lend a hand to put a smile on someone’s face.

[Image: Dave Willman/Bigstock]

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