August 6, 2019
Lamar Harris is a special needs adult with the mental abilities of a preteen. He has lived in his house in Gloucester Township, NJ, his entire life.
But Harris risked losing his home in weeks if he didn’t pay $50,000.
When neighbors discovered that he was days away from losing the home he’d grown up in, they rallied and raised more than $67,000.
As a result of the death of his family members, his reading deficits, and his inability to understand finances, Harris had fallen behind in his property taxes. They have not been paid since his father died in 2015.
So when he received a legal complaint that threatened him with foreclosure as a result of unpaid taxes and interest payments, his friends scrambled to help.
Terri Fretz, who has known Harris for 38 years, set up a GoFundMe page to try and settle his debts.
“We, his neighbors, have all banded together and have been watching out for Lamar since his dad died. This problem just recently came to light and is too big for just his neighbors to handle,” Fretz wrote on GoFundMe.
And in just one week, they raised enough money to satisfy the lien and pay almost all of his 2019 taxes.
Harris was so thrilled when he heard he’d be able to stay in Cherry Circle, he called everyone on his street and met them in their yards to celebrate, Fretz told CNN.
She posted an update on GoFundMe to thank everyone who donated.
“We want to thank the hundreds of wonderful people who found room for Lamar in their hearts. You are all proof that kindness can make a difference in a person’s life in a big way. We have raised the money needed to pay off the lien that was placed on Lamar’s home. He is very grateful and understands the kindness that has been bestowed upon him. All donations that he continues to receive will be applied to Lamar’s future and current needs (attorney fees, current year taxes, home maintenance). All money will be deposited into a bank account set up solely for the Lamar’s benefit. There is still good in the world. There is still hope for us all.”
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