When Kate McClure first met Johnny Bobbitt Jr., he was homeless.
He spent this Thanksgiving resting in a hotel, his feet up on the bed, drawing up a grand plan for his new life — thanks to several thousand dollars she raised to repay him for a good deed.
Bobbitt used to spend most of his time sitting with a sign on a roadside in Philadelphia.
In October, McClure was driving down Interstate 95 there when she ran out of gas. Scared and nervous, she got out of the car to head to the nearest gas station and met Bobbitt. He told her to get back in the vehicle and lock the door. Minutes later, he emerged with a red gas can.
He had used his last $20 to buy her gas.
Bobbitt didn’t ask for money; McClure didn’t have any then. Over the next few weeks, she gave him a jacket, gloves, a hat and socks. She would give him a few dollars each time she saw him.
But McClure wanted to do more. About two weeks ago, she and her boyfriend, Mark D’Amico, who both live in New Jersey, started a GoFundMe page. They hoped to raise $10,000 — enough money for first and last month’s rent, a reliable vehicle and up to six months of expenses. Normalcy.
The story ran in a local paper and later went viral. By Friday, the fund exceeded $300,000.
“I don’t have an explanation for it. I think it was the perfect storm,” D’Amico told CNN Thursday.
More than 10,000 people have made donations, the GoFundMe page said.
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SOURCE: CNN, Dave Alsup and Darran Simon