My Goodwill Story: Garry

Garry, a 40-year-old single father, recently went on a journey of transformation, not just for himself, but for his son, Brayden, who has been his beacon of hope. 

Garry’s life was tumultuous, marked by the challenges of a broken home, the lure of illegal activities and the shackles of addiction. His youth was a battle against the odds, with school dropouts and prison bars casting long shadows over his potential. Yet, amidst the turmoil, the birth of his children became a pivotal chapter in his life, a reminder that every day is a new page to be written. 

The turning point came with a second chance granted by a compassionate judge, leading Garry down the path of sobriety and self-discovery. It was a path that would eventually lead him to the doors of Goodwill Kentucky (Louisville), where he found not just a job, but a lifeline. 

Goodwill® offered Garry more than employment; it provided a platform for growth and a community that embraced him. The expungement clinic cleared his record, while the Cars to Work program provided stable transportation. The Good Smiles program even gifted him a new smile, symbolizing a fresh start and newfound confidence.  

With those details ironed out, Garry was able to start training for a position as a career coach. He started out with Goodwill as a Peer Support, advanced to a Career Coach and is currently, a Senior Career Coach working with young adults.   

One of Garry’s proudest moments along the way was the homecoming of his son, Brayden. With Goodwill’s support, Garry secured a home where Brayden could thrive under his father’s care. Together, they stand as a testament to the power of perseverance and the strength of paternal love. 

As we celebrate Father’s Day, Garry’s story is a true celebration of fatherhood. It honors the role of fathers in shaping lives and the indomitable spirit that can overcome even the darkest past.  

Garry, once a man battling his demons, now stands as a proud father, a guiding light for his family and a living embodiment of the belief that with determination and support, one can rewrite their story. In his own words, “We are not what we know but what we are willing to learn.” 

This Father’s Day, Garry’s journey is a reminder that every father has the potential to be a hero in their child’s eyes and that sometimes, the greatest gift a father can give is the example of a life well-lived.