Retired Marine volunteers to help kids cross busy street

Retired Marine volunteers to help kids cross busy street (Image 1)
Retired Marine volunteers to help kids cross busy street (Image 1)

Students at a Pennsylvania elementary school have been getting to school safely thanks to a retired Marine.

Since Monday, Cpl. Lewis Alston, who was wounded in the Vietnam War, has helped children at Martin Luther King Jr. Elementary School cross a busy intersection that does not have a crossing guard.

According to WRIC, Alston noticed the lack of help on the road last year.

“I saw, when I was coming down the street, a student that ran in between the cars,” Alston, 63, told ABC News. “The traffic will not stop for the children at all. It’s just heavy in my heart to have the students have to deal with this.”

This year Alston decided to take action.

While traveling home from a funeral Monday, he stopped to help kids cross the street.

“I had my uniform on, and I thought, ‘Wouldn’t it be a golden opportunity for the students to see a marine help them cross the street?’”

He now goes to the school every morning and afternoon in his uniform and volunteers as a crossing guard.

Alston doesn’t try to stop or block traffic, but he will ask cars to stop. He also crosses the street with groups of students.

The School District of Lancaster said it does not have a crossing guard at every intersection because they are short on resources. They are grateful that Alston volunteered to help.

“I think the marine uniform was a great idea,” said Lancaster Police Chief Keith Salver. “He’s a very honorable man. You almost wish more people would take that much interest in a community.”

Alston’s acts of kindness are spreading.

A few of his friends, who are also veterans, plan to start a team to help kids cross the road at intersections without crossing guards.

*WRIC contributed to this report.

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