Stranger gives boots off her feet to homeless woman during harsh Chicago winter

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“I went to the Chicago Bears game today. We spent $32 total on the train fares, $200 for our tickets, $7 for a hot dog, and $41 at Giordano’s after the game. We paid that much money to come to spend a fun day in the city even though it was cold. I feel guilty. We have much more than what we need and we don’t even have half of what most people have.

The high today was 30 degrees, so naturally I layered up in a lot of clothing. I wore Under Armour pants and an Under Armour long sleeve shirt along with two additional pairs of pants, four shirts, two sweatshirts, three pairs of socks, two pairs of gloves, a coat, a hat, a scarf, and my favorite new pair of winter boots.

While we were inside of Giordano’s I was very warm so I took off everything except my pants, socks, boots, Under Armour shirt, and hat. I tossed it all into a bag and when we left I carried that bag and put on my coat.

We had a short walk to the train station and as we were walking across the street I noticed a homeless woman crouched down trying to stay warm. The ‘walking’ light appeared and Sean, me, and two of our friends hurried across the street to make sure we made it to the train on time so we wouldn’t have to wait for the next one.

I got across the street and felt like I was going to throw up. I had passed countless amounts of homeless people all day but for some reason I was so drawn to this woman. I told my friends to please wait for just a moment and I tried to quickly get back across the street to talk with this mystery woman.

As I approached her, I saw that her cardboard sign said, ‘I am in need of winter boots and winter clothing items.’ Immediately I knew that this was providential timing and that I was supposed to give her the winter boots straight off of my feet.

I felt a little bit crazy because I was just planning on walking back to the train in just my socks.

I asked her what size she wore and she said 8.5 (same as me). I asked her what size shirt she wore and she said medium (same as me).

YOU GUYS I HAD EVERYTHING IN THAT BAG THAT SHE NEEDED. Shirts, sweatshirts, gloves, scarves, etc.

The boots she was wearing were worn and were wet. Mine were warm and waterproof.

I handed her the bag of clothing and winter items that I had taken off at Giordano’s, and my leftover pizza, and told her that I would like to give her my boots.

She stood up and cried. I sat down with her, untied my boots, and slid off the top layer of my fuzzy warm socks and handed them to her. She said they were the nicest shoes she’s ever had.

We exchanged names and a few other words. We looked about the same age. We talked a lot. Not through words as much as just by looking at each other. She looked worn and tired when our eyes first met but by the time I left I could sense the warmth of her personality and the thankfulness in her heart.

I started to walk away and she said, ‘I don’t want your feet to be cold, can I give you my ‘old’ boots?’

She who had nothing, offered me these boots. HER boots. I wore them all the way home.

Her name was Amy and I just cannot stop thinking about her.

If you have the urge to do something kind for someone, I want to encourage you to do it.”

This story was submitted to Love What Matters by Kelly McGuire. 

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