Legirtha Smith

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Chicago resident Legirtha Smith decides to spread her Pay It Forward Challenge money throughout the city, surprising strangers at every turn. She begins with an experiment—posing as a homeless person, she hands out gift cards to generous passersby, although she's disappointed by how few people actually stop.

Legirtha isn't done yet! For a pharmacy worker who always has a kind word, there are gift cards for shopping and dining, as well as beautiful flowers. A valued cashier at a local restaurant is surprised with a new camcorder. In a completely random act of kindness, Legirtha shocks a woman at the train station with a gift certificate for a night at a hotel. Finally, she stops by the Pacific Garden Mission, which serves nearly 600 men each day, to donate socks, underwear and other needed items.

For Legirtha, fulfilling this challenge is a blessing. "You never know how good you have it until you see how bad someone else has it," she says. "I thank God every day for blessing me with life, health and strength. I may not have everything that I think I should have, but I have everything I need."