A year ago, Michelle Hudson sent a video message to the ABC11 Troubleshooter that said, "I ran out of money, I have no food, and I'm currently alone."
MICHELLE HUDSON: I'm desperately in need of help.
DIANE WILSON: Raw emotion to Michelle Hudson last April, shortly after she lost her job when the COVID pandemic shut down North Carolina.
MICHELLE HUDSON: I have ran out of money, I have no food, and I'm currently alone. If there's anything that you can help me with, please, please reach out to me.
DIANE WILSON: ABC 11 viewers immediately responded. Her neighbors donating food. More than a hundred emails from total strangers from all over the triangle.
MICHELLE HUDSON: "If you don't have any food, my family cooks every night. We'll bring you some groceries." "How can I help?" One sent a gift card. Another one sent a gas card. Another person reached out and said, I want to pay your rent. I'm like, I can't let you do that.
DIANE WILSON: So much help from ABC 11 viewers that also gave Hudson hope over the last year.
MICHELLE HUDSON: It really taught me that people will help you. All you have to do is ask for it. I just didn't know how to ask.
DIANE WILSON: Michele is back at work at a new job. Plus, she got healthier during the pandemic by losing 45 pounds. One of her happiest moments-- finally able to see her son in person after 385 days. To keep him safe from COVID, his group home locked down to visitors, but now that's lifted. And Michelle said she couldn't stop smiling during the visit. And now that she's back on her feet, she's paying it forward.
MICHELLE HUDSON: Every time I go to the grocery store and I buy something, I put something in the bin for someone. It says needs food.
DIANE WILSON: As for others still struggling, Michelle says what helped her was she just took it one day at a time and also prayed, as that helped her get through these rough times. She also wants to thank all the ABC 11 viewers that helped her, as that made all the difference. I'm troubleshooter Diane Wilson, ABC 11, "Eyewitness News."