An American businessman has shown to the residents of the Paradise-ravaged Paradise in California that he has the heart in the right place. Bob Wilson was struck by the suffering of the pupils of the local high school and decided to go full of money with two suitcases. Each of the 980 pupils and 105 teachers received 1,000 dollars.
The restaurant owner and real estate developer presented his wonderful gesture yesterday. He travelled from San Diego – in southern California – to the town of Chico near Paradise and opened his suitcases there. It turned out to be worth 1.1 million dollars in checks. And they were intended for the pupils and teachers of Paradise High School.
Wilson decided to hand over the money after reading a story about the school in the Los Angeles Times newspaper, which was still going on despite the fact that the students had become separated by the forest fires. One of the students told the newspaper that he missed out on spending time with his friends and revealed to a girl that she was crying all the time.
That broke Wilson’s heart. In an interview he said that he wanted to make the children laugh again and “give them a bit of freedom to do what they liked to do”. “And allowing them to resist their thoughts, so that they did not have to think about what had happened.”
“High school had a big impact on my own life”, he continues. “I would dare to say that it was the first and last period in which I really had no worries at all. I wanted these students to know that someone cares about them.”
According to the director of the school – Loren Lighthall – a total of 900 pupils and their families lost their homes due to the terrible forest fires. They also killed 88 people. “Bob’s gift makes these children have some money to buy essential items such as food, clothes and petrol,” says the man.