Get ready to feel your faith in humanity restored a little bit once again.
Las Vegas magician Rob Anderson, best known for his recent viral video of tearing up an ever-smiling homeless veteran’s sign and turning it ?into a wad of money? is back, and this time he has some unexpected help.
After Anderson’s last video received more than 6 million views in barely over a month, he was able to turn that into a successful GoFundMe campaign, collectively raising with viewers more than $40,000 in donations in order to help Alan, the ?anything helps? veteran.
But there’s a delightful twist ? Alan didn’t take all the money.
Nope, he wanted to share it with others.
Anderson states in his latest video:
?Alan, being the humble man that he is, only accepted a portion of the funds raised before moving to California to look for work where he’s now living happily.?
Instead of taking all the money and running as so many of us would, Alan and his siblings requested that the remainder of the money be used to help other veterans. They requested Anderson find another vet ?truly in need through no fault of their own,? and that’s just what Anderson did.
After speaking with a local veteran’s group, Anderson was able to pick just the right vet. Enter Gulf War vet Johnny Hicks. Hicks has devoted 20 years of his life to the U.S. military.
To lend the magician’s signature element of surprise, Anderson told Hicks that he was being interviewed regarding a documentary on veterans that was allegedly being created, allowing Anderson to record Hicks? moving story for his current video and life-changing extravaganza.
Hicks lost his government job due to health problems, putting his entire family of wife and four kids in jeopardy. To make matters worse, the family experienced a severe mold problem at their former residence and was forced to move out, losing much of their belongings in the process. All their everyday vital possessions were lost, such as clothing, furniture, not to mention their very home, itself. With little income and a blow like that, the Hicks family was facing a very tough future.
However, thanks to Anderson’s charity publicity stunt and media magic, in addition to the humble and gracious generosity of the smiling vet Alan, Anderson was able to offer life-changing help to the Hicks family. To sweeten the deal, more than 1,600 anonymous donors also helped.
Anderson’s grand finale was partnering with the first vet he helped to save an entire military family from despair, providing them with a year’s worth of rent in their current residence, clothing, six months-worth of food, and a new car.
Now that’s, magic.
Check out the video below:
Dylan Hock is a poet, novelist, professor and social activist. He is published in a number of little magazines and has an essay on the muzzling of Ezra Pound included in the anthology ?Star Power: The Impact of Branded Celebrity?. Currently, he also writes and edits for If You Only News, Addicting Info, Green Action News, and Take 10. Follow him on Ello, Google+, LinkedIn, RebelMouse and Goodreads. Hire him for freelance writing and editing work on Elance.