Financial Help Loving Your Neighbor


My dad did something every month for nearly 10 years that impacted countless people in our community. And he kept it totally quiet until a few weeks before he passed away.

He gave a $100 bill every month to our local pharmacist, Brooke Walker, to help people in our small town of Geraldine, Alabama that needed assistance in paying for their critical prescriptions.

He never wanted anyone to know where the money came from or how it was used. He just asked Brooke to use her judgment and to tell the recipient that “this is from someone that felt led by God to help another”.

My dad grew up in Geraldine, so he knew the people in the community. He was pretty sure that some people were having trouble paying for their medicine. He’d been down that road himself. Our mom had suffered with MS and passed away in 1999. She had been prescribed a lot of different medicines to deal with her symptoms. My parents were not well off since they were farmers, and were astounded at the high price of her prescriptions. I know they must have struggled to pay for those medicines.

He likely noticed others struggling in the pharmacy to pay for their prescription. My dad heard the Lord saying “I’ve got a mission for you.” He slipped Brooke a crumbled up $100 bill and instructed her to give it to someone who needed help paying for their medicine. And he’d go to the pharmacy every single month and give Brooke another $100; sometimes a lot more.

Brooke said, “I always did my best to follow God’s tug on my heart. I never allowed it to be used for things such as pain medication; only antibiotics, life sustaining medication or urgent care situations.”

And for nearly 10 years, they were the only two that knew about this. According to Brooke, “We used it for sick children, patients just getting out of the hospital, kids needing EpiPens for allergic reactions and families in between insurances. I can’t begin to tell you the amount of families that he supplied not only medications, but also a hope in Christ when they needed it most.”

My dad had COPD and took a bad turn toward the end of 2022. I had to stay with him and do his errands. That’s when he confided in me that he’d been doing something for a while and that as long as he was alive, he wanted to keep doing it.

We were totally shocked to find out he had been doing this, but not surprised. He was always wanting to do things that were pleasing to the Lord. He wanted to show God’s love to others in a quiet way. He was a Godly man that tried to live by the Bible’s teachings. He read it and prayed daily. He truly believed it is better to give than to receive, and he certainly lived this out. He saw the glass as half full and was always thankful for his blessings. No matter what, he said things could be worse.

When my dad had passed, Brooke finally opened up and shared some of her stories about my father’s humble gifts.

All this has made us as a family want to carry on what he’s been doing. And it has really changed me. I have a bigger desire to put away my selfish ways. I find myself asking, “What does the Lord want me to do?”

It’s also had an incredible effect on our town. People in Geraldine are now making donations to the pharmacy to keep my dad’s legacy alive. And my dad’s birthday on April 24 has been proclaimed Hody Childress Day every year. Everyone throughout the community is asked to do a kind gesture for someone else that day. Because of the attention that his story has generated across the country, pharmacists in cities around America are reporting that people have started to donate money to help others. It’s called Hody’s Heart Fund.

He would not be happy with all this attention. But on the other hand, if he thought it could change one person and make them follow Christ, he’d probably be okay with it.

One other note about my dad’s passing: in 1973, a tornado in Geraldine killed my grandfather and my seven-year-old brother, Butch. That devastated my dad. My dad died on New Year’s Day, 2023, one day before Butch’s birthday on January 2. He had said a few days earlier that he wanted to be in heaven a little early to celebrate Butch’s birthday with him. I said, “Dad, we had time with you, now it’s Butch’s turn to be with you.“ It had been 50 years since my dad had seen Butch.

Maybe my dad’s humble generosity will be a turning point where we start helping each other and caring for our neighbors. I hope so. As Brooke said, “That simple act of kindness, one that he needed no glory for and never told anyone about, has impacted so many people.”

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  • Reply
    June 28, 2023 at 8:39 am

    What a beautiful life, lived well. Thank you for sharing this with us.

    • Reply
      Shahbaz Masih
      July 28, 2023 at 2:03 pm

      We Are teaching Bible Sunday School Children’s here in sialkot Pakistan so when they grow They Should Have Better Life in Faith Amen

  • Reply
    July 17, 2023 at 8:24 am

    A beautiful legacy to leave! Thank you for sharing.

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