Xavier Jackson gripped the pair of keys tightly as he walked in a daze out to the driveway. He had been working and saving for years to make a down payment on a car, but his mother had just handed him a pair of keys and told him to look outside. Could this be real?
Xavier and his mother Kimberly Jackson have been through a lot together. Xavier is her only child, and she raised him without the assistance of a father. They left the comfort and support of their family and friends in South Carolina after Kimberly finished her term of service with the US Navy, and started from scratch in Jacksonville, Florida.
Their financial struggles were severe when Kimberly started her new career as a nurse at University of Florida Health General Hospital. In spite of her chaotic work schedule and long hours, Kimberly fought to be there for her son, and provided him with everything he needed.
Six years later, Xavier is an intelligent and compassionate young man who gained his work ethic through following his mother’s example. He graduated from high school with excellent grades while working full-time to save money for college and a new car.
“That was my car the whole time?”
The house was packed the day of Xavier’s high school graduation party. Grandparents and aunts and uncles were up visiting from South Carolina. His god-parents and friends joined the celebration. With so many visitors, it was expected that their driveway would be packed with other’s cars, but he had no idea one of them was his.
“After picking up the car from DriveTime, we ‘hid’ it in the driveway,” said Kimberly, “there were so many people over, and we were already used to our neighbors borrowing our driveway, so it didn’t stand out to him when he walked right by it!”
After a series of gifts and congratulations, Kimberly told Xavier she had one last gift for him, and placed the keys in his hand.
“He couldn’t believe that I would buy him a car because I was always telling him that he was working to buy his own,” said Kimberly,”and he couldn’t believe that it was right outside during the party, like ‘that was my car the whole time?'”
The car was a graduation surprise, but also a necessity as Xavier will be attending Florida A&M in the Fall. He will put his car to good use as he studies law in Tallahassee, but hopefully he’ll take many trips back home to hug his mother.