He didn’t have any change in his pocket, but that didn’t stop Jimmy Mains from paying it forward to a man in need.
Mains, a Pennsylvania police officer, was on his way to last Friday’s Pittsburgh Penguins game against the Tampa Bay Lightning when a homeless man kindly asked for some money. Mains informed the man that while he didn’t have any cash, he did have an extra ticket to the game.
“I told him I didn’t have any (money) but if he wanted he could go to the game and get out of the cold for a bit,” Mains shared in a Facebook post. “I introduced myself and he told me his name is Rob.”
Incredulous about the offer, Rob soon realized that Mains wasn’t kidding.
“I don’t think it set in with him that we were going to the game until we went through the gate and through the metal detectors,” Mains shared with NHL.com. “He told me he had never been inside (the arena), only outside.”
And with this, a wonderful story about sports and generosity began warming thousands of hearts online.
“We went in and the whole time he couldn’t stop smiling,” Mains shared on Facebook. “Once we got to our seats it was time for the National Anthem. Rob took off his hat and sang the whole time.”
The two enjoyed the game, as well as some chicken tenders at intermission, before Rob explained just how much Mains’ offer had meant to him.
“At the end of the game he told me that I made his life,” said Mains. “He asked me how he could repay me and I told him just to pay it forward. Just trying to put some positivity on Facebook.”