MOORE, Okla. (KOCO/CNN Newsource/WKRC) - A young Oklahoma man says he is thankful for his job and would do anything to provide for his family -- even if that means he has to walk 17 miles round-trip for work each day. But maybe, not for long.
"My mom had passed away when I was 16, so it was kind of hard for me," Donte Franklin said.
Franklin said life hasn't always been a clear path for him after his mom died and his siblings raised him. "I had to be positive," he said. "I had to grind to make a better me, to make my momma happy."
To get to work Franklin has to put one foot in front of the other -- literally. "I have to walk 2 hours and 26 minutes. That's 8.6 miles," he said.
That's just from his house to work. Then, after a full shift, Franklin turns around and walks back for a total of 16 to 17 miles. "That's 5 hours and 15 minutes altogether," he said.
While walking to his job as a cook at the Buffalo Wild Wings in Moore, a man stopped him. "He asked if I needed and ride, and I was like, 'Yeah,'" Franklin said.
The man was so inspired by Franklin's story he created a GoFundMe page to help him get back on his feet -- no pun intended. "It makes me want to keep grinding so I can help other people like they are helping me," Franklin said.
He said he's studying to become a welder and just needs more money to continue to help his family, even if it means hiking to work in scorching temperatures. "I just got to keep going, keep going. It's all going to pay off in the end," Franklin said.
The goal of the GoFundMe page was $2,000. In just over one day it's raised more than $16,000.