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Kevin Riley's Fundraiser:

For my Dad, Chuck.

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BENEFITING:

Kevin Riley

THE STORY:

I have been wanting to help my dad out a bit, and a friend mentioned one of these websites. I'm pretty sure it is a long shot but I figured it couldn't hurt.

I'll start by talking a bit about myself first. You see, I am going into my senior year at a state college in upstate New York while my brother is just about to graduate high school and will be attending a $45,000 school in the fall (ridiculous). My brother and I are the first ones from our family to go to college straight out from high school. While my parents have ALWAYS been there for us and have worked so hard to provide everything we have needed throughout our lives, financially things are always so tough. Here is my story:

My father has been put in a tough place over these past few years. When I was in high school, about 6 years ago my parents went through a pretty nasty divorce. I know a lot of people have to go through this involving their parents, and a lot of people know it is a terrible experience. Everything would have been fine, had my father not been laid off from his job where he worked for over 20 years, which went oversees, dead in the middle of the divorce. On top of the lawyer fees, having to provide for 2 kids, and paying the mortgage and utilities, things got REALLY tough. I remember having to take money out of my college savings so that my Dad could pay the bills. He had to declare bankruptcy, we had to move out of the house my brother and I grew up in, and things seemed to be getting worse. My brother and I could not help but feel that much of the struggles were our faults.

Luckily, my fathers old place of employment, Albany International (the one that laid him off), agreed to pay for him to go back to a community college in the area for a couple years. And that is just what my father did. He went back to school for 2 years, and learned to be an electrician. However now, the problem is that 2 years worth of bills and the wounds from declaring bankruptcy have to be dealt with.

My dad is somewhat back on his feet, but I had a conversation with him the other night that was pretty emotional. He told me that he wishes he could have been there more for me and my little brother. He said that he wishes that he was there for us more than his dad was there for him. I couldn't help but tear up. I tried so hard to reassure him that we don't hold anything against him, that sometimes life throws you curve balls, but I can tell he was upset talking about it. My dad is turning 50 this November and has lived in the same little town his whole life, and thinks that he has nothing to show for a life of hard work. Not to mention my dads entire family is in shambles due to the passing of his father (my grandfather) last November, and the subsequent legal battle over his will.

So this is why I am here. I want to show my father, Charles, or "Chuck" as everybody calls him, that I could not be more appreciative of the life he has shown me. My dad is the most loving, easy going, kind-hearted person I know. Not to mentioned how hard he has worked and how far he has come in the past few years. He is finally doing something that he loves to do, but can't cope with his financial problems.

Through this, I want to accomplish one major goal. I want to help my father out financially. I want to be able to help the man who has helped me so much over the 21 years of my life. I am proud of the person I am becoming, and I attribute so much of that to my father. Right now, I am sitting in the small living room in my dads apartment typing this, waiting for him to come home from his job an hour and a half away. Its just so crazy to think about how things change so fast in life. I love my dad, and would do anything for him, even type up this long sob-story on a fund-raising website in an attempt to get him out of this hole. If I can raise enough, I may even try to send my pops on a little vacation to show my gratitude. As a broke college student, I've had no way to do this. But maybe this way will work out. Who knows. I'm just trying to make a great person who has had some tough times live life a little bit easier. He deserves it, and dads who have had it rough everywhere deserve it.

Thank you guys.

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Kevin is working on selecting a charity so you can support For my Dad, Chuck..