From army boots to running shoes, this community has changed a gardeners life

Army Boots

A community had seen a man running in army boots every morning, they grew curious and then one day someone went up to him to hear his story… What they did next has completely changed this man’s life!


Communities have the power to make incredible changes when they come together. We have proven this time and time again here on Good Things Guy. With this being said, we are always blown away by the new stories that we get sent.

This story about Joseph Thoka, a gardener from the Midstream Estate outside Centurion, has us absolutely floored. We feel so wonderful being able to share such an incredible feel-good story with you today!

It all started back in January of this year. The community of Midstream Estate had noticed a man running in the early hours of the morning, wearing army boots. Naturally, the curiosity turned into conversations and then someone approached him.

Esti Bester, a resident of the Midstream Estate sent us Joseph’s story and explained what they had done for him.

“I live in Midstream Estate, just outside of Centurion. Every morning the residents see a man running, training, in army boots. We don’t know who he is, or what he is training for. Finally, someone posted on our community platform and now Joseph is our local hero and a true inspiration!”

“Joseph works as a gardener at a few houses in Midstream but is an avid (and incredibly talented) athlete. He spends his early morning training for the Comrades and this year, he has qualified once again, but this time things will be a little bit different.”

“The community has come together, as ONLY South Africans can, and have been able to get everything sponsored for Joseph, to make this his best Comrades yet. This man deserves all of the support and recognition he can get” – Esti Bester

Everything is no joke! The community has literally changed Joseph’s life! These are just some of the things they have done for him since January.

  • They bought him a new, comfortable bed.
  • They got USN to sponsor the necessary supplements.
  • He was joined to a new running club that will sponsor his transfers to and from the Comrades.
  • He has been invited to a training camp in Dullstroom by John Hamlet. Some of the previous Comrades winners have attended this camp.
  • Sakhele from the running club (think he is the club captain), has sponsored Joseph’s living expenses for the next month.
  • Garmin sponsored a watch, perfect for athletes.
  • His accommodation has been booked for the Comrades.
  • The community is funding for various running shoes to help him through his training period and on race day.

Joseph is targeting a sub 6 hour Comrades, which will see him qualify for a special Wally Haward silver medal or even a top 10. Whatever his time on the day, Joseph is an inspiration! We look forward to keeping you updated on his progress.

If you would like to find out more about his journey, check out the Facebook page the community set up for him here.

Sources: Facebook
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Tyler Vivier
Tyler Leigh Vivier is a writer for Good Things Guy. Her passion is to spread good news across South Africa with a big focus on environmental issues, animal welfare and social upliftment. Outside of Good Things Guy, she is an avid reader and lover of tea.

1 Comment

  1. John Hamlett

    May 11, 2018 at 5:24 pm

    Ok correction I think entsika the company has sorted his salary – Zakhele the ceo has paid for most New nutrition has supplied all his supplements for the camp and further – shoes are supplied from our sponsor maxed – mr price and much more …in fact the camp is fully funded by Entsika and New nutrition

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