HATTIESBURG, MS (WDAM) - A teenager in the Hub City has turned his free time into a lawn business, and with the help of a satisfied customer, he'll be upgrading his gear.
Jakobe Webb, 14, can be seen with his push-mower cutting lawns around North 19th Avenue in Hattiesburg.
"One day I was just cutting my auntie yard and I was like, I can do this to make money," Webb said. "So I just started going around asking neighbors if they need their yard cut."
Webb's Aunt, Elizabeth Smith, said she is overjoyed with his hard work.
"It means a lot to me, it means one thing, he's not in the street getting in trouble," Smith said. "Second thing, he's working for what he wants, he doesn't have to go out here rob, steal and kill for it."
Webb cuts so many yards around the neighborhood, his aunt can't keep up.
"He cuts mine, his grandmothers, his great grandmothers, I really can't tell you how many," Smith said.
One of his customers, Israel Rivera, started a Go Fund Me account, all to help him get a better lawn mower.
"Everyone wants money, but few want to do what it takes to earn it," Rivera said. "This kid Jakobe wants to do it the right way, wants to earn it and at 14 already gets it."
Rivera wanted to see if anyone was willing to invest in that and help the youngster upgrade his lawn care business to something more real.
"He needs a better mower and some of the other lawn care essentials," Rivera said. "I think $500 maybe the right amount to help him get a leg up with his equipment and make some real money for the summer instead of asking anyone for money for school clothes or an iPhone."
Webb's aunt said she has tried to teach him the right way to do things and stay out of trouble.
"Earn your money the right way, hard work pays off, my father always told me always work for what you want," Smith said.
"It's rare to find kids these days willing to get out in the Mississippi heat (90 degrees this morning) and grind for what they want and need and don't complain or make faces, I was amazed I hope you are too. This is easy. Who's in," Rivera wrote on the Go Fund Me page.
In no time, the page which was hoping for $500.00 made it over $600.
"First thing…he (Rivera) never told me anything about it until after the fact, and just the point of him noticing that Jakobe did such a great job, that means a lot," Smith said.
WDAM 7 asked Webb what he thought about the money raise…his answer was brief.
"I need a new lawn mower," Webb said.
Smith said it's all character building for the future.
"I think it's great, I think it will give him great potential, so he is able to do more things in life," Smith said.
You can see more details on the Go Fund Me page at the following link: