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Campaign for elderly Chicago ice pop seller exceeds $200,000

Campaign for elderly Chicago ice pop seller exceeds $200,000
Posted at 10:54 PM, Sep 12, 2016
and last updated 2016-09-13 01:54:03-04

A customer started a modest campaign to raise money for an elderly Chicago popsicle seller but it far exceeded expectations.

For years, 89-year-old Fidencio Sanchez has pushed his cart, selling paletas -- Mexican ice pops -- to support his wife and grandchildren. According to the Chicago Tribune, he has been pushing the cart in the Little Village area of Chicago for 23 years. His wife, Eladia, also sold them until she got hurt.

The customer, Joel Cervantes, initially met Sanchez last week and bought 20 paletas and intentionally overpaid, giving the elderly man a $50, according to the GoFundMe story.

Cervantes had hoped to raise $3,000 but has raised more than $244,000 dollars within 3 days by more than 11,000 people. The first $3,000 was raised in less than an hour.  

Sanchez was surprised but very thankful for the gesture, his granddaughter Dulce Perez told the Chicago Tribune for her grandfather.

"It means a lot, and the changes will be that there will be no need for me to work, and we will have help in all aspects -- like getting better clothes and things that will improve our life at home."