Plainfield boy asks for food donations on 11th birthday
September 11, 2013 (PLAINFIELD, Ill.) -- Max Molinari is a fifth grader who requested gifts of canned food that he can donate. He's an ordinary young man doing an extraordinary deed, while most children are asking for video games. A relationship that began in 2nd grade has blossomed into lesson in courage, devotion and generosity.
Jennifer Woods has 7 children and it was her 11-year-old son Trip Morrison who has taught her the meaning of hero. On Wednesday, in her Plainfield home, she is packing up donated canned goods for her son's best friend.
"He is the kid who is changing the world," said Jennifer Woods.
Wood says she decided to honor Max Molinari because he represents the anti-bully, always helping out the underdog.
Wood's son, who has special needs, has been a classmate with Molinari since the two met in 2nd grade.
Molinari turned 11 years old on Tuesday and this is how he wanted to celebrate.
"All Max wanted for his birthday was food donations for a local charity," said Woods.
The family packed up all the donated items and went to surprise Molinari at his home with a special card decorated with their favorite video game characters, the Angry Birds.
"Oh, thank you, this is really cool," said Max Molinari, 11.
The symbol of their friendship is the smiley face, something Molinari's parents taught him can go a long way to help a friend.
"They stress to me that I should be a leader, that God wants us to be a leader," said Max.
Woods shared Molinari's story with her Facebook friends instantly. Groceries and money started to pouring in.
"$1,000 and food, wow," said Max. "Thank you so much. I'm just very grateful to have this opportunity."
More than $1,500 was donated and Max plans to donate it to Creekside Cares, which was started by one of Max's teachers who wanted to give food to her students who had suffered economic hardships.
local, cheryl burton
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