West Virginia teenager Jason Thomas had to overcome significant obstacles before he was able to graduate from Sissonville High School last spring. And he couldn’t have tackled perhaps the toughest one — homelessness — without the help of a Postal Service employee: Meredith Taylor.
The Kenna, WV, retail associate and her husband decided to foster Thomas after it was revealed he had been living undetected on school property for several months during his sophomore year.
He and his mother had recently moved to Sissonville — a community near Charleston, the state capital — but they lost their home, and she dropped out of the picture.
“I didn’t tell a soul, because I didn’t want anybody to feel bad for me,” Thomas told the local ABC station earlier this year.
Eventually, though, the burden became too much for Thomas to bear. He confided in a school counselor, who contacted the Taylors about taking him in.
“They didn’t know me maybe a month and they didn’t care. They just said, you know, just come stay with us for a little bit and see what we can do for you,” Thomas recalled.
“He is my son,” Taylor said. “That is how I feel about him.”
She and her husband encouraged Thomas to improve his grades and focus on being a high schooler instead of focusing on where he would sleep at night.
Now, with his diploma in hand, Thomas has plans to pursue training as a welder. He also recently reconnected with his mother and got a place for them to live.
He doesn’t, however, plan to ever forget the Taylors’ kindness.
“They are such a blessing,” he said.