THE family of a kind-hearted Alvechurch boy who sparked a social media storm after finding a lost mobile phone admitted they have been overwhelmed by the response.
The WIllTheRealJoshBrownPleaseStandUp campaign began when 12-year-old Josh Brown returned a Birmingham teenager’s phone he located on a train and refused a £20 reward.
Josh, a pupil at Alvechurch Middle School, was travelling with mum Angela and older brother James into the city to see the canals being drained and noticed the £300 iPhone 4 on a train seat.
It had been left by Michelle Hickinbottom’s 16-year-old daughter, Shaunnah, and when Michelle, from West Heath, called the phone Josh said he would hand it in at Selly Oak train station on his way home.
Michelle asked him to leave his address so she could send a £20 reward for his kindness but instead the youngster left a simple note with the phone. ‘Don’t worry about the money, just do something nice for someone else’ it said.
Michelle started a quest to find Josh to say thanks and the posts were shared thousands of times on Facebook and Twitter.
“A week later, one of my neighbours came up to me and said ‘is this about your Josh?’ and I was amazed by all the reaction.” said Angela.
“So many people have posted so many lovely comments. We never thought it would attract so much attention.
“We’re so proud of Josh. He just thought of it as doing the right thing. He said he wasn’t going to take any money off her and he’d just ask her to do something nice for someone else in future.”
Josh said: “My dad always says ‘what goes around comes around’ and if I lost my phone I would like to think someone would do the same to me.
“I didn’t think it was a particularly extraordinary thing to do. But I was gobsmacked when it appeared all over Facebook and Twitter.”
Michelle said she was delighted to get Shaunnah’s phone back particularly because it contained sentimental photos.
She said: “I just wanted to find Josh as I thought it was a lovely thing to do. I said to him on the phone at the time it was really appreciated and to leave his address so I could send him £20 to thank him really.
“I was choked when I saw the letter. I was really overwhelmed. He will go far in life with an attitude like that. He seems a great lad.”