JONESBORO, AR (KAIT) - It is a very special Mother's Day weekend for one Jonesboro woman who now has a brand new car.
"This is all about a single mom," RNR Tire Express owner David Harrison announced at the store Friday. "And we took letters from all over our region and we selected one mother that had a very special story."
Harrison decided to start a yearly tradition of giving a car away each Mother's Day.
"It's a blessing to be able to do that and really, this comes from another experience with my mom," he said.
Harrison's mother Virginia raised him and his three siblings as a single mom after her husband left. Virginia was also raised by a single mother.
She made sacrifices so her kids always had what they needed.
"Our house was falling apart, and my mother drove whatever she could afford," Harrison said. "A lot of times that wasn't much. But she always made sure that we had good things. You know, when we went to school we looked like other kids."
One day while in his 20s, Harrison was able to pay his mom back by buying her a car.
Because of his mom's humble and giving spirit, he decided to do it again in her honor.
"I thought wouldn't it be great to give that experience to another single mom," Harrison said.
Out of the thousands of entries that poured in, the panel of judges made the unanimous decision that Shereka Ray, the mother of a 9-year-old girl, was the deserving woman.
She was almost speechless after the surprise Friday.
"I'm just so thankful," Ray said. "This is just… I just don't know. This is amazing. This is really amazing."
For her hard work, RNR Tire Express gave Ray a 2016 Buick Encore. The business will also pay the sales tax and licensing fees.
Yokohama also donated a new set of tires to Ray for when the first set is worn out. And she was given a $500 gas gift card.
Don Blackmore with Central Baptist Church is who nominated Ray for the prize.
"I thought we have so many worthy and deserving single moms in our church but for some reason Shereka just kind of popped in my head," Blackmore said. "She's overcome so much adversity, she's a hardworking mom, and she's a good mom. She serves our country. She's in the military on reserve for the National Guard."
Ray also works with women at Central Baptist Church who are struggling with similar past experiences.
"I never really thought that something in my past could actually help someone, so I'm just very thankful for that" Ray said.
She hopes not worrying about paying for a car will allow her to continue spreading God's word.
"One of the biggest things I wanted to start doing last year was missions, and I couldn't figure out how in the world am I going to fund that," Ray said. "Well, now I have no excuse!"
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