From a chair in the corner of his hospital room, Stephen Currier can see a clean pair of boots, a closet full of new clothes and a growing stack of gift cards.
They’re all luxuries he never could’ve imagined just two days ago from neighbors he didn’t know he had.
Tuesday night, Courier was walking across U.S. 380 near the Central Expressway bridge he’d recently been calling home.
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He said he was headed back to his sleeping bag when he was hit by a car.
Daniel Stein was just a few drivers behind.
“I swerved. I missed him, thank God, and I immediately turned around to go find out what was going on,” said Stein.
After using his car to block traffic, Stein sat with Currier on a curb waiting for the ambulance to arrive.
What happened next broke his heart.
“The first thing he said was, ‘I don’t have insurance. What am I going to do?’ And then the second thing he said, which broke my heart even more was, ‘These are my only pair of pants, and they just cut into them. What am I going to do’?” said Stein.
As medics took over, Stein turned to social media for help.
“I posted it on my Facebook thinking, we’ll have a few people. Maybe they can donate some clothes. You know, maybe they can help him find a safe place to stay,” said Stein.
That post was quickly shared and by Thursday had been seen by thousands.
By the time Currier returned to his room at McKinney’s Baylor Scott and White Medical Center after a second surgery, his closet was at capacity with multiple duffel bags packed full with more clothes than he can possibly carry.
He also had flowers, fruit, well wishes and gift cards, and more importantly, a few offers of a safe place to stay.
“I’ve never seen a community come together like this, especially for a homeless individual,” said Stephen Currier.
Stein acknowledges that does make Currier seem like a risky bet, though it’s a risk many in McKinney have deemed worth taking.
“To see the community say, ‘You know what? It doesn’t matter. We’re going to give anyway. It’s the season for it. We’re going to take a chance and love this person,’ is so beautiful, and that’s how hearts are changed,” said Stein.
Currier still has one surgery ahead, but doctors hope he’ll be released shortly after Christmas. Stein says not only will he have a place to go, but hopefully opportunities to work and contribute to society.
“This could be a blessing in disguise,” said Currier.
It’s a fresh start he hopes to one day have the opportunity to pay forward.