BEDFORD, Ky. (WHAS11) - He's made it his goal to make his town a better place each and every day. In this week's edition of our Five Questions series, you'll meet one of Bedford's finest men.
With a population hovering just around the 600 mark, Bedford is a small, but mighty town.
"I love it because I know just about everybody in it,” Paul Carter said. “People in this town, when you need something, they come together. That’s why I love it, and why I want to be a part.”
Everybody in the town knows Paul Carter. His full name is actually Noble Paul Carter, but he dropped the Noble part a while back.
"There used to be a Noble Carter that lived close to me, and our mail got mixed up. So, I just started using Paul,” he said. “I had an uncle named Noble and an aunt named Pauline. So, my mother was safe on either way of naming me. If I’d been a girl, I would’ve been Pauline, I guess.”
For about ten years now, this former handyman has taken it upon himself to become Bedford's cheerleader
"It makes me know that I've accomplished something if I've made somebody happy,” Paul said.
He rides his scooter through town, rolling out random acts of kindness everywhere he goes. Just last month, he passed out more than a hundred hot dogs to people in need.
"Everywhere I go, they'll holler at me and stuff. I have to watch going up and down the street because somebody will be hollering, and I'll have to look around. "Quit that speeding", they'll say. "Slow down". We're going to give you a ticket, that kind of stuff,” he said. “I can’t get out like I want to because of my handicaps, but I know God had to give me these to slow me down and get me to thinking about what I was doing.”
He may not be reaching top speeds with those wheels of his, but as an animal, he would.
"I would probably be a lion, not because he eats other animals, but because I just like the way he looks when he runs and growls and all of that stuff,” Paul said.
Paul also picked up painting as a kid, adding artist to his collection of careers.
"I watch Bob Ross on TV and Jerry Yarnell, and this old German and his wife. So, I took some hints from them, and I guess I had a little natural in there, too,” Paul said.
Paul said his brother was a major supporter of his artwork, even putting together a studio for him. When he died, Paul said he had to take a break.
“Then, he got killed in a car wreck, and I couldn’t go back in there because I’d look at that stuff he built for me. So, I gave it up till here a few years back, and I thought, oh, I’m going to try to do that again,” Paul said.
If Paul could travel back in time, he'd go back a couple thousand years to meet the man he lives for.
"I would've liked to have been here when Jesus was on earth to see him in person,” Paul said.
Faith is the foundation of this father of four's life.
"God gives you joy that lasts in the night, in the day, and anytime. He's with us everywhere,” Paul said. “I was raised in a family of ten kids, and my mom and dad took us to church every Sunday and every Wednesday. It’s been in my life the whole time. I had a few years where I messed up, but after my wife left, I got back to God and I’ve been doing that ever since.”
That kind of hope is something Paul wants to spread to each and every person he can.
"The world needs a whole lot more of L-O-V-E, love. No matter what color our skin is or what we are, we can love one another. I found that out. I've never seen a person that I don't love and that I can't get along with,” Paul said.
This guy is a firm believer that serving that goodness to others can come in all forms, especially food.
"Someday, I'm going to have a soup kitchen in this town, regardless of all the obstacles,” he said.
This optimist knows it's not the most profitable position, but he believes his reward will come after a life lived for others.
"I don't need to be a millionaire because I may be one in heaven.”
Paul said that's the only paycheck he'll ever need.
"I actually don't know how much I'm worth. I may be up there with Mr. Trump, you reckon?” Paul said. “I want my legacy to be that I never did anything to harm anyone, just a heart full of love that helped people.”
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