Classmates chip in to buy special needs student new shoes

SAN ANTONIO, TX (NBC News) — One Texas high school student won’t soon be forgetting this holiday season thanks to his classmates.

J.R. Gilbert is a special needs student at Somerset High School in San Antonio.

When his classmates learned he was wearing sneakers two-and-a-half sizes too small, they decided they needed to help him out.

About 20 students pitched in and raised $180 to buy the sophomore two new pairs of Nike shoes.

On Friday, the last day before the holiday recess, they gave the shoes to Gilbert.

He was obviously pretty excited about the gesture and to be wearing shoes that fit. His mom Linda called the gesture sweet and says it’s nice to see her son has so many friends who care about him.

Video of the moment Gilbert got his shoes was posted to social media by the school and has since gone viral with close to 4 million views. provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Commenters who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. Please be respectful of the opinions of others and keep the conversation on topic and civil. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review.

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