John Goodlett hasn’t even completed a full week of work at Enterprise Rent-A-Car and already he’s getting national attention for being an exemplary employee, just for lending a helping hand.
A photo of him carrying one of a customer’s twin infants as he processed her rental car is winning over the internet, after the mother posted the picture on her Facebook page.
It started last week when Goodlett, 25, went to pick up Coty Vincent from her Tulsa, Oklahoma, home and brought her back to the Enterprise office. She had brought car seats for each of her 11-month-old boys, but didn’t have a stroller that could hold both of them, so she asked Goodlett for help.
“He grabbed one of the boys out of his car seat and I grabbed the other and we went inside,” she told TODAY.
Vincent, 25, expected Goodlett to hand off her son “and let me fend for myself” with the boys. Instead, Goodlett headed straight for the counter and began processing her order.
“So I kind of moseyed on over to where he was working, playing with one son while he had the other one. He was working away, holding him like a champ, like he’s done it his whole life,” Vincent said. “I can’t even multitask that good.”
The small gesture moved Vincent, who snapped a photo of Goodlett, typing on the computer with one hand while holding her son with the other. She posted the picture to Facebook that evening.
“While he helped me with my rental due to a hit and run accident, he held one of my twin sons as I don't have a double stroller,” she wrote in the caption. “One of the most compassionate and caring people I've ever met. We need more people like John who go that extra step. Be a John. #BeAJohn”
She shared the post with some of her Twin Mom groups, where members encouraged her to make the post public. Once she did, the post got picked up and went viral on various Facebook pages. On her own page, the post received more than 224,800 reactions and 24,600 shares.
Goodlett said he was surprised by the attention, and by why people have made such a big deal about something that should come naturally to others.
“I’m still blown away. It just makes you wonder: What did I do so special? This was something that’s part of my instinctual way to do. It’s kind of shocking to see the world took it as such a big motion,” he told TODAY. “But I hope it helps get the message out that this is the way people are supposed to treat each other every day. We could all help each other and be a little friendlier.”
Goodlett noted he has something in common with Vincent: He's a twin himself. He lives with a sister, and jokes about their “love-hate relationship.”
“Just like any sibling, one moment we got each other’s back, one moment we’re yelling at each other’s throats,” he said. “But it’s a real thing. It’s a natural love and it’s deep.”
Marlyn Jones, the Enterprise branch manager where Goodlett works, said his new employee has jumped into his job without hesitation and that even colleagues have noted his performance. Although he wasn’t in the office the afternoon Vincent came in, Jones said other employees told him what had happened.
“They were like, ‘Man, John was holding a baby. John went above and beyond. He went the extra mile,’” he said.
Enterprise’s corporate office offered to reward Goodlett with a gift card for his service. Instead, he chose to donate the funds to his favorite charity, a local Boys & Girls Club run by the Salvation Army. The organization will receive scholarship money and new sports equipment, Jones said.
Vincent also heard from Enterprise’s corporate office, which ordered her a double stroller that will finally allow the single mom to leave the house without needing an extra set of hands to help.
But Vincent is just as excited that her post about "a simple act of kindness" has touched so many hearts around the world.
“There are a lot of great Americans in this country and that’s what we really need to see, because people are getting depressed and hearts are getting so heavy from everything going on right now,” she said.
“It’s up to us to turn this around. So many have forgotten we are humans and we do kind things and we do treat with each other with respect, and smile and hold doors open and do these little things. I want to remind people they can be kind to one another."