07/27/2017 12:03 pm ET

Rod Stewart Funds Families' Trip To D.C. To Protest Medicaid Cuts

"I’ve just seen something on CNN that’s heartbreaking," Stewart told his manager.

A group of children with disabilities and their parents couldn’t raise enough money to go to Washington, D.C., to protest the GOP health care bill that included proposed cuts to Medicaid.

That was the case, at least, until Rod Stewart stepped in.

On July 10, CNN aired a story about the children and their families on “Erin Burnett OutFront” on. The heartbreaking story of children with serious medical conditions and their parents talked of the group’s plans to charter a bus to D.C. from Baton Rouge, Louisiana, to protest the proposed cuts to Medicaid, upon which they all deeply rely.

The children have ailments that require implements like ventilators, feeding tubes, feeding formula, heart rate monitors — necessary materials that Medicaid supplies. Additionally, the program helps these families from going bankrupt due to medical expenses.

In order to make the necessary trip, the families needed about $30,000, of which they had only been able to raise $7,000. They also weren’t able to secure a meeting with their elected officials, nor anyone from the Republican National Committee, according to CNN.

Upon watching this story, Stewart found himself moved and immediately contacted his manager.

“I’ve just seen something on CNN that’s heartbreaking,” Stewart wrote to his manager. “It was a group of families with severely disabled children who are driving to Washington to confront about health care cuts. See if you can find out who they are.”

“I’d like to help in some way,” he added.

Reuters Staff / Reuters

Stewart’s manager, Arnold Stiefel, told CNN that Stewart “was so touched and heartbroken and actually teary.”

Stewart and his team reached out to the organizers of the bus charter, Angela Lorio and her friend Jessica Michot, co-founders of Trach Mommas of Louisiana, and subsequently wrote them a check covering the remaining costs they required. 

Lorio, a Stewart fan, told the publication that the check was “beyond [her] wildest dreams.”

Of the generosity, Stewart ended his concert on Tuesday night in Holmdel, New Jersey, with a video tribute to the children and families who took the bus trip.

“Some of you may know that I live in America and pay my taxes here,” the singer said. “I’m neither a Democrat nor a Republican, but I am a father.”

What a class act.



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