GOOD

Repo Man Pays Off Repossessed Car And Returns It To Elderly Couple

They chose their prescription drugs over their car.

There are few dilemmas worse than when your personal beliefs conflict with your professional obligations. That’s why it’s easy for meter maids, repo men, and collections agents to become jaded. Recently, Jim Ford, a repo man Belleville, Illinois, had a change of heart and decided to do something special for an elderly couple whose car he repossessed.


82-year-old Stanford Kipping and his wife Patty, 70, had fallen behind on the payments for their 1998 Buick after the price of their prescription drugs became too much for their fixed incomes. The couple had over two years left on their $95-a-month loan, so Ford was called to their house to repossess the car. After meeting with the Kipplings, Ford tried to make a deal to help them keep their car, but there was nothing he could do. So that night he hiosted it on a hook and towed it back to his lot.

“When I got home that night, I said to myself, ‘They are a real nice elderly couple. I gotta do something. I can’t just take their car,’ ” Ford, co-owner of Illini Recovery Inc., said. So that night, Ford set up a GoFundMe campaign to help the elderly couple and raised over $3500 in a single night. That was enough to pay off the car loan, stuff an envelope full of $1,000 cash, and buy them a turkey for Thanksgiving.

Ford and his friend, Tom Williams, got to work on the Buick and gave it an oil change, fixed its headlights, topped off the radiator fluid, and stuck the envelope full of cash in the glove compartment. When they pulled up in the Kippling’s driveway, the couple couldn’t believe their eyes “It was a miracle come true. We didn’t know what we were going to do,” said Patty Kipping. “I got up this morning and I looked up at the sun and I said, ‘I hope we get our car back.’ It’s just unbelievable,” a relieved Stanford Kipping said.

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Center for American Progress Action Fund

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