Everyday Heroes

Man Gifts Salon To Woman Who Gave Him Kidney

When he found out she was the one who would be saving his life, he wanted to make her dream a reality.

Acia Williams didn't expect to get anything in return when she donated her kidney to her mentor and longtime friend, Chet Bennett.

Williams has known Bennett for over two decades. He owns the beauty shop where she works in Washington D.C. and has always supported her to further her career and reach her goals.

"Everybody loves him, because he's just a genuine person. He's always been a giver, and he's always helpful. He's had hundreds and hundreds of students," Williams told WJLA.

Chet Bennett and Acia Williams have been friends for 20 years. A New Image by ACIA/Facebook

In 2018, Bennett shared a post on social media saying that he was sick and needed a new kidney. A lot of people responded to the post, so Williams assumed he would find one quickly.

Months later, when Bennett still didn't have a viable donor and was getting sicker by the day, Williams decided to step up and help.

She said she was ironing when God told her that she was supposed to be his donor.

"God was in my spirit, just like, 'You are his match, and you're going to donate your kidney to him,'" she said.

Turns out, Williams was a perfect match to be Bennett's donor and the surgery was scheduled for April 2019.

After the surgery, Williams and Bennett went to Bennett's home where his mother and sister helped both of them with their recovery.

The grand opening of Acia Williams' salon.A New Image by ACIA/Facebook

That's when Bennett told Williams that, as a thank you for helping to save his life, he was giving her one of his beauty salons.

Williams, who had been managing the salon for the past eight years, was shocked. She said the two had talked about her buying the shop from him in the past, but she had no idea it would be given to her as a gift.

"He was like, 'You need to hurry up and get ready, because I'm going to give you this salon,'" Williams said.

Last week, 'A New Image by Acia Salon' had its grand re-opening in Washington's D.C.'s NW neighborhood.

Bennett, who says he feels healthier than ever now, says giving Williams the salon was the least he could do to thank her for her kindness.

"I can't begin to thank you enough, for you giving me life, but we can start with making your dream a reality by having your own salon," he said.

And, judging by the line of people waiting to be served by Williams and her staff at the salon, her new "dream life" is already very real.

How can you start something good?

Inspired by Smith's incredible act of kindness? If you're not already signed up to be an organ donor, click here to register with Donate Life America.

There are many ways to save a life while you're still living by giving a part of yourself. You can give blood, become a living donor or register to be a bone marrow donor.

Let's #StartSomethingGood together.

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