This Man Attends Every Funeral in Town… And His Community Bought Him a Fancy New Suit.
In a world that rarely stops to do kindness, a smile or a wave, Rodney Ridenbark is like a breath of fresh air. He is no celebrity, but he is someone special for the people of Downtown Jerseyville.
Rodney is arguably the most well-known resident of this district. It’s common to see him walking in the area, come rain or come shine. His wife Carrie Ann passed away a few years ago. Now, he has made it his mission to attend every funeral in town. Regardless of whether he knows the person or not, this is his way of paying his respects to the departed souls.
Ridenbark also makes daily rounds of the area and walks into every establishment along the route, waving happily to everyone and acknowledging people with a smile. He’s proactive with greeting people, genuine, and always has something nice to say to everyone he meets. What endears him to the residents of Downtown Jerseyville is the fact that he expects nothing but a wave and a smile in return. Many feel like he should be Mayor, but when you throw this idea at him, Ridenbark simply laughs and shrugs it off in a nonchalant manner.
The Turning Point…
People that know Ridenbark say that he’s always been outgoing and friendly, but his ‘mission’ to attend every funeral in town came in the wake of his wife’s death. His outgoing activity helps him cope – he finds solace in paying his respects to anyone that passes away in Downtown Jerseyville.
Some of his friends thought that it would be a nice gesture to buy Rodney a brand new suit for his funeral-attending. They set up a crowdfunding page on the GoFundme platform hoping to reach out to the local community to help them raise $600. The idea was to use this money to purchase a suit, shoes and tie for Rodney.
The outcome of their crowdfunding effort far exceeded their expectations. At last check, their page had over $3,900 in donations, which was truly incredible. People in this little district had seen nothing like it and it was heartening to see that kindness and good deeds never go out of style. Rodney’s 60th birthday is just around the corner and a big party is on the schedule.