Less than a day after purchasing over $200 worth of groceries for a mother and her 5-month-old son, Matt Jackson was killed in a car crash. Now, the woman is hoping to honor the kind-hearted 28-year-old and his good deed.
Jamie-Lynne Knighten was attempting to purchase groceries from a Trader Joes on Nov. 10 when her credit card was declined due to an anti-fraud block, according to KNSD. That's when 28-year-old Matt Jackson stepped in and offered to pay the mother's groceries on one condition: that she promise to do it for somebody else.
Although their encounter was brief, Jackson's kind gesture stuck with Knighten. The mom felt compelled to call the LA Fitness where Jackson said he had worked, to let the staff know what stellar employee they had on their hands.
But when Knighten was put in touch with Jackson's manager, she learned the tragic news -- that Jackson had been killed in a car crash just less than 24 hours after he had purchased her groceries.
Knighten described Jackson's good deed and what it meant to her in a touching Facebook post.
"I thought for sure I would get the chance to see him again, give him a hug and thank him at least once more in person," Knighten wrote on Facebook. "Now I won't get that chance, but more importantly no one else will get the chance to meet him. And that breaks my heart."
LeeAnn Krymow, Jackson's mother, told ABC that her son had a habit for performing acts of kindness without expecting anything in return, and recounted a story in Phoenix when the 28-year-old gave up his bottle of water to a homeless man in the sweltering heat.
"Matt jumped out of the car, ran over to the homeless person on the side of the road and gave him his bottle of water, then just hoped back in the car without saying a word...like it was completely normal," Krymow told ABC. "Matt had a heart for people."
Both Knighten and Krymow hope to honor Jackson's memory by "paying it forward" and encouraging others to live life to the fullest.
"Do kind things for people. Love with every fiber of your being," Knighten wrote on Facebook.
"Be a light in this dark world, make kindness and compassion part of your daily life," Krymow told ABC. "Be the change!"