Arkansas grandma befriends teen after he returns lost wallet

17 January 2023

MEMPHIS, Tenn. (WREG) – An Arkansas woman is praising a teenager who drove miles out of his way to return a wallet he found in the parking lot of a Walmart on Thursday.

Dee Harkrider, 61, said she had no idea she had left her wallet behind in a shopping cart at the Forrest City, Arkansas, store, and was amazed when she learned a young man had found the wallet and was headed her way.

“Anybody could have picked that up,” said Harkrider. “He could have just taken it into the store, but he took it upon himself to bring it to me. I’m just overwhelmed.”

(Photo courtesy of Dee Harkrider)

Nineteen-year-old Delivontae Johnson said he went to Walmart to replace a tire. He said he parked in a pharmacy spot and immediately noticed the wallet.

“I wasn’t supposed to be parking in that spot but thank God I did,” said Johnson.

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Johnson said he found Harkrider’s driver’s license, started driving to her home in Wynne, and was able to get in touch with her through Facebook.

“I live in Wynne, but I was in Palestine. So, that young man detoured and came to Palestine and brought me my wallet,” said Harkrider.

The two met up in the parking lot of a restaurant. Harkrider said she hugged Johnson and asked him to take a picture with her to post on Facebook because she was grateful for what he had done.

“I wanted people to know what this young man had done for me. I had to share it,” Harkrider said.

Harkrider also gave Johnson a $20 bill tucked inside her wallet and said she wished she could have done more.

“No, ma’am. It was more than I expected,” said Johnson.

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Johnson, an East Arkansas Community College student, said he was glad to have the gas money. He also said his mom was proud of him.

“She said I did a good job. I’m glad she raised me to be the man I am today,” Johnson said.

Johnson and Harkrider are now Facebook friends and even found out they have a friend in common. Johnson said she wants people to know there are still good people out there who want to help each other.

“God watched over me. He brought this angel into my life,” she said. “God sends people for a reason into each other’s lives.”

Johnson said that a week earlier, he had blown out his tire after hitting a pothole on his way to church. He said he was happy things worked out the way they did.

“I once heard in church from a pastor the devil will strike before God begins to bless,” Johnson said.

Harkrider said she has no doubt God will bless Johnson for his act of kindness and hopes they stay in touch for years to come.

“You’re stuck with me now,” joked Harkrider.

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