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Gift from stranger inspires grieving widow: "It just touched my heart"

At the bottom of a hole in Chesterfield County, Virginia, utility worker Calvin Godette is fixing a leaky water main, but no gusher down here compares to the fountain of good deeds he delivers when he’s back on the surface. 

Whether it’s buying coffee for the next car or groceries for a random shopper, Godette gives away about half his income to complete strangers. In return, he gets a thank you at best, but remains undaunted. 

“You don’t never know,” Godette said. “You could do something for somebody, or talk to someone, and you could change their whole situation.” 

Godette said that happened once a few months ago. While at a Burger King drive-through, he happened to look in his rearview mirror and see a woman who seemed sad. So he did what he does — bought her a meal — and found out that this random act of kindness would not soon be forgotten. 

Denise Walters, the woman in the car, had just lost her husband of 41 years. She said Godette’s kindness was exactly what she needed in that moment, and it had such a profound effect that she chased him down, told his boss about his actions, and got him recognized before their county board of supervisors for his good deed. 

Denise Walters.

On the Road

“Somebody to do something that nice for you, on that very moment when I thought nothing could make me happy again, it just touched my heart,” Walters said. 

Walters and Godette have kept in touch since that day and grown their circle.

“I told her, I said ‘You may have lost a husband, but you gained a family,” Godette said. 

Godette has also become Walters’ new role model. She’s following his example and doing the same thing he does. 

“He has shown me the way,” Walters said. “If he can do this, I can do this.” 

Calvin Godette and Denise Walters.

On the Road

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