Seventeen-year-old college student Ayman Arafa lay in a hospital bed, bloodied, beaten and traumatized after a meet-up gone horribly wrong. The events from the previous night left Ayman haunted as he wondered how he would recover from such a devastating blow.
But despite the evil in this world, there are people fighting for good. And Ayman, laying hopeless in his hospital bed, was about to find out firsthand just how love triumphs over evil.
— ScottGordonNBC5 (@ScottGordonNBC5) May 18, 2017
It was May 11 when Ayman, a pre-dental student at Tarrant Community College in Forth Worth, Texas, was driving to an apartment to purchase an iPhone. He’d found the iPhone deal on “Offer Up,” a popular buying and selling app and had been in contact with the seller to arrange the details of the purchase.
However, when Ayman arrived at the south Dallas apartment, he was ambushed. “I was put to the ground and then they told me to not move,” Ayman told NBC DFW.
Today, our friend ayman got robbed/beat up, they took everything he had including his car, wallet, and his phone. The least we could do. ❤️ pic.twitter.com/fA87qsq1uM
— Waleed🔊 (@TheHabeebb) May 12, 2017
“He pulled out the gun,” Ayman shuddered. “I just said, ‘Please don’t shoot.’”
In the end, Ayman was robbed of his wallet, his phone, and his car. “I wouldn’t want anyone to go through what I went through,” the assaulted teenager said.
Meanwhile, news of Ayman’s assault spread through his community of friends like wildfire. “I was shocked,” said Ayman’s friend Mamoun Samman.
“We thought we had to go and do something,” Samman said. “The nature of our friendship, we have the wildest ideas.”
So, Ayman’s friends came together and figured out a wild way to help. “My group of friends and I decided we should reimburse him with everything that he had stolen from him,” explained Waleed Mahdawi.
The group of men pooled their resources and presented an overwhelmed Ayman with a new wallet, $400, and a new phone. But they didn’t stop there — the friends even managed to purchase Ayman a new (used) car, so he could continue to commute to work and school.
“It was really big,” Ayman grinned. “They surprised me really good.”
Ayman couldn’t believe the support from his band of brothers — friends who have now become family. “I’m truly blessed for having my friends visit me the next day, but I wasn’t expecting for them to bring me everything that I lost.”
“It wasn’t much for us individually to contribute to something like that,” Samman said of the generous gifts. “But at the end of the day, there’s no price on friendship.”
Ayman’s friends hoped their actions would send a larger message to their community: that evil cannot win. “We want to make a difference in our community and we want to send out a message that love truly beats hate,” Mahdawi expressed.
Ayman is left greatly encouraged, knowing he has an army of a family by his side. “It went from friendship to family because most of these are all brothers to me,” he expressed. “I love every one of them.”