Bronx man turning bad luck into kindness toward others

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THE BRONX -

A Bronx man who has been down on his luck has decided to turn his trials and tribulations into triumph for other people in need.

Military veteran Marcus Knight, 50, was diagnosed with cancer after being near the World Trade Center when it collapsed on Sept. 11.

Knight's son and family recently lost their Clay Avenue apartment in a fire. When his family went back for their belongings, they discovered they were stolen.

Knight was motivated, though, to help others who are also less fortunate. Knight created an initiative called Hand Up Paid Forward, challenging stores to give back to the underprivileged.

On Saturday, Knight gave two free coats to the children of single mother Susana Ortiz and also provided her family with a free meal at Olive Garden.

Knight has raised more than $12,000 worth of merchandise such as clothes, hats, gloves, shoes and food for underprivileged families.

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