Customer gives car to Dollar General employee in Champion

The owner of Nonnie Motors found the woman crying after her car broke down, and decided to surprise her

A local car salesman gives a Dollar General employee a car in Champion.


CHAMPION, Ohio (WYTV) – In Youngstown, one out of every five households does not have a working car, one of the highest rates in the country. Going without a car was one Champion woman’s reality before she received a special gift from a friend.

Donna Ervin works at the Dollar General in Champion and has made plenty of friends.

“She has people that come in to see her from all over the city, they know her by her name,” said manager Christan Bennett. “I love working with her.”

Frank Fordeley goes to the store every day to buy balloons for his car lot, Nonnie Motors, and say hello to her. One day he found Donna crying.

Her car, a gift from her father, no longer worked. She had no money for a new one, and no desire to continue getting rides from friends.

“I try not to bother people, and I just felt like I was going to be a bother,” she said.

Frank thought he had just the right car for Donna.

“I told my wife…’We’ve got to do something to help this lady.’ She said, ‘Help her out.’ I said, ‘Well, I want to give her a car.’ She said, ‘You want to give her a car, you give her a car.'”

Donna followed Frank outside the store on Wednesday for the surprise of a lifetime: a 2001 Oldsmobile Aurora.

“You can’t never surprise me, but he got me today,” she said. “It’s a blessing and I’m happy.”

Frank said seeing Donna’s reaction was the “greatest feeling in the world.”

“That was an angel that walked into my life today,” Donna said. “I know him from coming in the store and I never thought this would happen.”

So of all people, why did Frank pick Donna?

“You can tell it’s genuine because she was like, ‘I just have to calm down before I pass out,'” he said. “Those are the people that you can tell, I did it for the right reason.”

“I don’t feel like I deserve this from him like that, and he said, ‘Yes, I do’…It’s hard to believe that someone thought enough of me to do this for me.”

Donna will be back at Dollar General for work on Thursday. She and her coworkers hope you stop by and say hello too.

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