Teen whose car was totaled by drunk driver gets offered free car

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A Good Samaritan who was rewarded with a new car decided to pay it forward instead.

18-year-old Jerry Ramirez and his friends stopped to help victims in a suspected drunk driving crash in Royse City in April. The victim instead took off in Ramirez’s car, leading police on a chase before crashing in Quinlan and dying.

READ MORE: Royse City student's car stolen after stopping to help accident victims

Ramirez's car was totaled, and insurance wouldn't pay for a new one. But when a local dealership stepped in to help, Ramirez made a surprising decision.

Ramirez says he's been blown away by all the community support he's received since stopping to help victims in a serious crash.

“It was honestly just another huge blessing that came our way,” he said. “I wanna really thank them from the bottom of my heart. This wouldn't have been possible without them.”

Ramirez's insurance didn't cover him for theft. So he was out of luck when it came to getting a new car after a suspected drunk driver stole then crashed it his car the night of April 13. But after hearing his story, strangers donated more than $15,000 for a new car.

Eric Barbosa and the team at Greenville Chrysler then heard about it too and offered to donate a car — no strings attached.

“We just knew he needed a car. His car got totaled,” the general sales manager said. “And here at the store, we usually help people with cars. So thought it was a good idea to get a hold of him.”

But after talking it over with his family, Ramirez had a surprising response.

“It didn't feel morally correct to accept the car after a lot of people had helped out for the sole purpose to help me get another car,” Ramirez said.

“Which astonished me,” Barbosa admitted. “And I told him what he could do is possibly get the car and re-donate it.”

Ramirez immediately thought back to his friend, Jeremy Poor, who set up the online campaign to help him and was with him the night of the crash. His own car was out of commission from an unrelated accident. So he gifted the free car to Poor and used the donated money to buy his own car.

“We were given the opportunity to help people who are in need of a car,” Ramirez said. “And it's going to help a lot of people most of all.”

“He could've easily just taken it and got both,” Barbosa said. “There's no greed there. There's just pure heart.”

Ramirez says once his friend gets his car fixed and can drive it again, they plan to pass the donated car on to someone else in need of one.