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Homeless man finds stranger's £200 shopping and tracks him down - is repaid in wonderful way

Mirror logo Mirror 30/12/2016 Scarlet Howes
Credits: garyshomelessfund © Provided by Trinity Mirror Plc Credits: garyshomelessfund

A kind-hearted homeless man has been flooded with job offers and donations after selflessly returning a bag of shopping worth hundreds of pounds he found in a phonebox.

The man, only named as Gary, found the £140 suit along with other items from Greenwoods Menswear store in Liverpool on Friday night.

Gary, who is in desperate need of medical attention after being beaten up by cruel thugs just weeks before, rang the store in a bid to try and find the owner.

Les, store manager of Greenwoods, told The Mirror: "A homeless chap rang the store saying he had found someone's shopping. Usually, we have no way of knowing who the owner is but the lad's friend had left his number as he'd enquired about part-time work.

Credits: Facebook / Lewis Roberts © Provided by Trinity Mirror Plc Credits: Facebook / Lewis Roberts

"We rang Gary back and we said we would ring this chap's friend. He then met the owner of the suit to give it back to him personally.

"He could have sold it, he didn't. It's absolutely amazing that he even rang us. And it's incredible how it worked out. It's almost fate.

"The owner has said how happy he is - it brings a smile to our faces."

After being reunited with his goods, Lewis Roberts shared the story on Facebook in a post praising the man's actions.

He said: "Gary found my shopping I had left in Liverpool and got in touch with the store to get it back to me... as despite being homeless he still returned my items which could have easily been sold on."

Credits: Google © Provided by Trinity Mirror Plc Credits: Google Gary, who weighs just nine stone, said: "The reason I gave the shopping back is because the guy bought that suit for a reason - for a wedding, a funeral, a party - and I wanted him to be reunited with it. I know I could have sold it but that's not the person I am.

"I am nothing special though. I just did what was right."

After a fundraising page was set up for Gary, support has gone "through the roof" for the rough sleeper with people desperate to donate.

Darren Galvin created the GoFundMe page , which has raised over a thousand pounds, after seeing Lewis's heartwarming Facebook post.

Darren said: "I set up the GoFundMe page to get a bit of help for Gary, a deposit on a flat, clothes etc, but I've been inundated with offers from the whole of Liverpool to help him get on his feet.

"I've been wanting to help the homeless and this story was so incredible it spurred me on to actually do something.

"I didn't realise it would get so big. At first people were sceptical about whether the story was real or fake but Greenwoods confirmed it happened."

But Darren revealed that despite the generous offers, Gary is still finding it hard to find accommodation and has been met with a "stone wall".

"That's the one thing I want to bring to the story. Me, as a non-homeless guy has really struggled to find accommodation for him. The waiting lists for hostels are so full and getting a flat is near impossible as it's such an awkward process to get anything sorted - it's very much a no-win situation as he has no address so he can't get housing benefit and even if he were to most landlords don't accept it."

Darren is overwhelmed by the amount of support Gary has received after sharing his story on social media.

"It's phenomenal. I've never seen anything like it. He's become a celebrity on the streets of Liverpool with people throwing money at him. But he doesn't want it. he's a proud man and instead wants to give back.

"That's the type of guy we're dealing with. A lady gave him £20 in the street the other day and he shared it with a fellow homeless man.

Credits: Facebook / Lewis Roberts © Provided by Trinity Mirror Plc Credits: Facebook / Lewis Roberts

"People come up and offer him two litre bottles of cider but he doesn't want that. He's had tears in his eyes when he's told me that he can't go anywhere without people thinking he's on the rob because of his scruffy appearance. But he's clean, he's not on drugs and he doesn't even beg.

"I'm hoping that he will see that 2017 will be a different year for him."

Gary said: "I want to say a huge thank you to everyone from all faiths and communities. I am humbled by the love they have shown me."

Greenwoods have said they will now be giving Gary a luxury parka coat to keep him warm for the winter as well as contemplating fitting him for a suit for possible interviews in the future.

A spokesperson said: "We think it's fantastic what he did. What a great act of kindness. He helped one of our customers so we want to help him."

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