In dog days like these, just the idea of trying to crank a lawnmower will make some folks dizzy — never mind actually mowing the yard. That's just a small part of what makes Rodney Smith Jr. of Huntsville an admirable man.

Smith has turned mowing into a movement borne of the kind act of cutting an elderly neighbor's grass for free simply because he could.

Since then, he's traveled the country five times mowing lawns without charge for the elderly, veterans, single parents and disabled people.

It's inspirational. But Smith didn't stop there. With a social media campaign, Smith and Raising Men Lawn Care Service created the 50 Yard Challenge urging youngsters around the world to mow lawns for elderly people, veterans, single parents and disabled people without charge. For every 10 yards mowed, the youngsters get a T-shirt. The initiative has gained 100,000 supporters, with 445 youngsters having accepted the challenge, resulting in more than 5,000 yards mowed in kindness.

On Tuesday, Smith embarked on another 50 state/50 lawn tour and invited police officers to join him and try out a police-themed mower he's built.

Meanwhile, his movement has resulted in the establishment of eight chapters, where local youngsters extend their generosity in their own communities.

We're proud to call Smith an Alabamian. He's not only helping those who benefit from his kindness, he's introducing a new generation to the rewards of selfless generosity.

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