Austin Freni was able to make it home for a visit over the holidays just before he was to ship out to the Middle East. His mother had been trying to find a way to pay for her son’s airfare and finally resorted to a GoFundMe page. Jennifer Richardson, a kind hearted stranger remembered her own experience with her brother who was in the marines and she bought him a ticket outright.
Freni, his girlfriend and mother went to the annual Mummers Parade – a colorful folk festival in Philadelphia, the city where residents drive out to the airport to boo bad landings. After the festival, the three were walking along when a group of 10-15 started ridiculing Freni because he was wearing his service jacket. The group then set upon the soldier, breaking his jaw and causing other serious injuries. He has had two plates placed in his mouth and his jaw has been wired shut and will remain so for another 8 weeks.
From The Mail Online:
The shocking attack is made even more upsetting by the circumstances of Freni’s visit.
The soldier had been stationed in Fort Benning, Georgia, and was to head out to the Middle East next year.
He hadn’t been able to make it home for Thanksgiving, much to the disappointment of his mom, who lost her husband to brain cancer two years ago, and later had to leave her job.
Lori was prepared to sell her things to bring her some home for Christmas, she told Fox 29 last month, but set up a GoFundMe page as a last resort.
That page was then stumbled upon by Jennifer Richardson, who then bought them the ticket outright – inspired by her own experiences with her brother, who is in the Marines.