Student comforts man with special needs on crowded bus

Godfrey Coutto, 21, holds the hand of a man with special needs to comfort him on a crowded bus. (Photo courtesy of Only in Hamilton via ABC News)

HAMILTON, Ontario (ABC) — Godfrey Coutto of Hamilton, Ontario, showed a stranger a random act of kindness and is now being applauded for being a Good Samaritan.

The 21-year-old student was photographed holding the hand of a man with special needs in the middle of a crowded bus to comfort him. The photo, which was posted to the Facebook page “Only In Hamilton”, has been shared over 50,000 times.

ABC News spoke to Coutto about the incident. Coutto said he initially believed the man was asking for a handshake; however, after taking Coutto ‘s hand, the man “held it tight” and “didn’t want to let it go.”

“I had to be selfless in that situation,” said Coutto. “He seemed like a happy guy, so I didn’t want to let him down.”

Coutto stayed with the man, known only as Robert, for the entire 30-minute bus ride.

Coutto said that Robert held his hand, leaned on him, hugged him and kissed his hands as they sat together.

The anonymous poster of the photo was sitting across from Coutto and Robert.

Coutto said that two nieces and a sister-in-law of Robert messaged Coutto on Facebook after reading about his selfless gesture, and thanked the student for being so kind to Robert.

The family also informed Coutto that Robert suffers from cerebral palsy and is also deaf.

“He had more problems than what I perceived at first,” said Coutto.

The student humbly acknowledged the praise that he’s received since the photo of him went viral on the Internet, saying, “I feel thrilled people are recognizing that I did such a good thing, but it’s not about the recognition. I don’t think I’m a role model or hero, I just hope that I’ve inspired people to do the same thing.”

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