Ty Warner, the Beanie Babies billionaire of Ty Inc., has recently shown the world that billionaires have hearts too. While being lost this summer in Santa Barbara, Calif. the billionaire found himself in a parking lot for directions.
In the very same parking lot, resident Jennifer Vasilakos who just experienced kidney failure back in 2011 along with being a previous skin cancer survivor which then led up to her being rejected for a kidney transplant was raising money for a stem cell treatment. The two began conversing about her unique health condition.
Based on her blog, Vasilakos desired to raise money to undergo the life saving procedure that no U.S. hospitals would perform called autologous stem cell treatment, which meant she would have to have the procedure in another country. Sadly, Vasilakos spent 14 hours a week in dialysis only to found out this devastating news.
Ty generously cut her a $50 check after receiving driving directions and vowed to donate more. After receiving a $20,000 check in the mail from Warner, she was overwhelmed with tears. According to her blog, Vasilakos described her immediate feelings after receiving such a random act of kindness:
“It was the type of letter you keep forever, and accompanying it was the check. A check that could change my life in an instant. Streaming tears of relief and amazement fell uncontrollably from my eyes, as I walked out of the room back towards the exit. I was flooded with indescribable emotion.”
On Tuesday a statement released explained Warner’s true urgency to help raise awareness for such a good cause:
“After I serendipitously met Jennifer, I further educated myself on her stem cell needs. I was shocked that this particular type of treatment wasn’t available to her in the U.S. … My hope is that we can bring this lifesaving treatment to the forefront so that it can become more readily available and provide alternatives for people like Jennifer.”
Just days before Warner’s generous gift Vasilakos took to her blog to share her true feelings about people’s hesitation to donate to her website:
“I wonder what people think, when they visit my fundraising page. What makes them decided to donate or not to donate? Especially the people, who personally know me. If someone I knew (even if for only 5 minutes), asked me to donate to save his or her life, then I would likely open my wallet on the spot and give at that very moment. So, I can’t help but wonder why everyone doesn’t do this. What stops them? What compels others to instantly give?”
Thankfully on August 19th, Vasilakos received her treatment after boarding a plane to another country. The name of the hospital has yet to be released, but the facility has been selected by the International Cellular Medicine Society. When Vasilakos returns the hospital and country will be release.