“He told me, ‘Believe in God.’ And I said, ‘I believe in him.’ And he said, ‘You know what? That car is yours,'” Edward Padilla said. “I was like, ‘Wow.’ I still don’t believe it.”
They were lured to a neighborhood car dealership and car wash on Chicago’s West Side by the promise of some much need help. Upon arrival, Good Samaritan Jermaine Jordan gave the victims of recent carjacking the surprise of a lifetime.
Virginia Martinez’s car was taken this Monday.
“I’m just, I, I just want to say thank you,” she said.
Best known for his Free Hot Meals restaurant on Madison Street, Jordan owns the car lot, too. He used his own money along with donations to cover the cost and fees of giving the cars away.
“I felt like I had to do something because I was a victim of being carjacked three times, and each time I thought that my life was over with,” Jordan said.
Working single parent Taqueria Little fought to hold back tears as she was gifted an SUV. Little was carjacked at gunpoint on December 6 on her way home from work as she waited to pick up her kids.
“Two guys approached me and take me out of my car with no shoes on or anything,” Little said. “I had just cashed my paycheck. Everything was in there. I lost everything.”
Emotions ranged from elation to shock. Luxury rideshare driver Abdullah Saleem had his black Lexus taken by an armed thief posing as a passenger.
“It was very traumatizing,” Saleem said. “For one whole month, I was paranoid. I was disturbed. It’s not an easy thing to go through.”
Jordan also helped carjacking victim and rideshare driver Angel Haralson with the $1,000 insurance deductible needed to repair her recovered stolen ride.
“I’m not working right now,” she said. “My funds are being depleted off of just living and trying to make other ends meet.”
Everyone also received a gas card and free groceries – along with a renewed sense in the power of doing good.
Jordan said he hopes this isn’t the last time he will be doing this. He said he’s been contacted by at least three dozen other people who have been carjacked. He said he hopes to be able to bless them as well.
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