My name is Jerry. I am 23 years old, am a first generation college graduate and am creating this GoFundMe to help save my family's future in America.
My Family's Story
In 1997, our family was the first in our family tree to immigrate to Southern California to start a new life. My parents wanted to give me and my brother opportunities they never had growing up. However, since moving to America, our family had combatted constant financial obstacles.
In 2011, my Dad's business collapsed. We didn't have income because customers weren't coming in. We didn't have savings because we threw everything we had into starting and maintaining the business. This business was a make or break for us. As a result, we almost got evicted from our apartment complex because we missed 4 consecutive rental payments. We didn't always have food on the table because our food stamps weren't enough to cover for our monthly food expenses.
We didn't know when our last day in America was going to be. My parents evaluated the option of going back to Korea almost everyday so we could move in with my grandparents. However, I remember my parents always ending those conversations with "No. We have to do this for John and Jerry". This is the kind of selflessness my parents have shared throughout my brother and I's lives.
Amidst our financial instability, my parents made sure my brother and I had the resources to live out our dreams. We didn't have enough to go on the annual school trips to Sacramento; but they made sure we got a chance to see California's Capital by taking a weekend road trip there. After working 13 hours, my Dad would come home at 7 PM to research all he could about colleges, the college admission process, and financial aid. When it was time for us to apply for college, he was the first one to tell us we would be going to a 4 year university - no matter how much it costed. He instilled the value of education and long term thinking to both of us.
Because of both my parents' perseverance and hardwork, my brother and I graduated from college and are living the lives we could have never imagined. And now my brother and I are saving up as much money as we can to put my parents in a house they can call their own.
On March 2018, my Dad experienced his first major robbery. Two armed men walked into his store, held my dad at gunpoint, ordered him to get on his knees, and demanded money. My Dad gave the miniscule amount of $250 he had with him, and it wasn’t enough for the robbers. The robbers smashed his phone, removed his security camera system, held him locked in his own place for 1.5 hr and walked out with his tires and wheels from his store.
As a result, my Dad moved his shop on July 2018. My brother and I contributed as much money as we could so he could start over and create a new business. He spent all of July and August moving, setting up electricity, and plumbing with his own two hands. As soon as he was about to finish, he had a terrible fall, fractured his wrists and elbow and was hospitalized on September 13th.
That same night, his entire shop was robbed of over $20,000.
As soon as I heard that, I flew over to see my Dad, his first words were "Hey don't worry about it. I'll figure it out."
My heart broke. He dedicated his entire life so my brother and I can live the lives that we dreamed about. His first thought during such a devastating time was to assure that my brother and I didn't need to worry.
I'm not a hopeless 16 year old anymore and for once in his life, I want to give him something that'll make his life easier.
How to Help
In order for my family to recover from both disasters, we need to raise $25,000 to cover my Dad's medical expenses and to help recover his stolen items.
We cannot do this without your help, which is why I am asking to share this page and donate any amount to help me keep my family here in the United States.
Until he fully recovers in 6 months, my family needs to continue paying rent on on my Dad's shop, my family's apartment and related expenses.
I am trying to negotiate with the hospital to reduce our financial burden and work with law enforcement so we can find justice for my Dad.
This is the most difficult letter I've ever had to write. I can't help but cry because I feel so helpless. If only I had enough money to help my parents retire. If only I had enough financial stability to help them through this. If only I could have done more.
As I'm opening my family's life out to the world, I hope you can help in our family's plea.
Thank you for your time and attention.
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