Solana Beach

Santa Fe Christian Schools Students Raise Thousands for Custodian's New Truck

High school seniors led fundraising efforts for a custodian who had his truck destroyed by a fire, and it only took a few days for them to surpass their goal

NBCUniversal Media, LLC

No one knows the power of the internet quite like teenagers, but even students at Santa Fe Christian Schools in Solana Beach, California, were surprised at how fast donations came pouring in for a custodian whose truck was destroyed in a fire.

A fire started under the hood of Clemente Mejia’s truck while he was working inside the school last Friday. By Monday, the students and school community raised enough money to buy him a new one.

“I’m very happy because all the families here at Santa Fe Christian are united and I feel like I’m part of their family,” Mejia said through a translator.

“I couldn’t imagine what his family could be going through,” said senior Sandy Cameron, who partnered with fellow senior Dante Rotchford to raise money for Mejia.

“I kind of had the idea, kind of out of nowhere, to start the GoFundMe,” said Rotchford.

They set their sights high with a $10,000 dollar limit only a few hours after the truck was destroyed.

“I kept checking the GoFundMe and I was just freaking out,” laughed Cameron. “Blew my mind.”

The "Help us replace Clemente's truck!" fundraiser netted more than $32,000 for Mejia in less than three days. More than 240 people donated.

“We were just like, ‘Oh my gosh.’ Like, ‘How? How?’” recalled Cameron.

“It was something that I could not believe,” said Mejia. “I thank God for all the people who were able to save money for me and may God bless them.”

Mejia said he had insurance on his truck but not full coverage. A Santa Fe Christian spokesperson said the school would work with a local dealership to purchase a truck for Mejia.

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