STL teen who walked 6 miles to graduation gifted new bike & $40,000 family vehicle

A St. Louis teenager has received an outpouring of support after walking nearly two hours to his graduation. (Source: KMOV)
Published: Jun. 2, 2023 at 9:59 PM CDT|Updated: Jun. 3, 2023 at 6:52 AM CDT
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CAHOKIA HEIGHTS, Ill. (KMOV) - A North St. Louis teenager who walked miles to his 8th-grade graduation now has two new ways to get around.

“I wasn’t expecting this,” says 14-year-old Xavier Jones.

Jones was gifted a $5,000 Ryan Pritchard Electric Bike during a celebrity basketball game on Friday. His grandpa stood by in shock as the family also received a $40,000 minivan thanks to the generosity of Bommarito Automotive.

“This means a whole lot,” Xavier’s grandfather tells News 4. “I don’t know what to say. I’m so thankful.”

He takes care of Xavier, who is diagnosed with Sickle Cell Anemia, and his six siblings after their mother passed away a few years ago.

After watching the story on News 4, Cahokia native and current Miami Dolphins player, Terron Armstead, arranged for the special surprises to happen during his basketball tournament at his alma mater.

“We hear a story like Xavier. It’s only right,” says hometown NFL star, Terron Armstead. “Follow Xavier’s example. He’s a leader whether he wanted to be or not. His story is inspiring. It’s motivating. That’s what leaders do.”

Xavier was also given a full-ride scholarship to Harris Stowe State University for his determination to succeed in the face of adversity.