Heartwarming Tearjerker of the Day: In anticipation of her 9th birthday, Rachel Beckwith informed her mom that she didn’t want presents; instead, she asked friends and family to donate $9 to charity: water, so that kids her age in Africa would have clean water to drink.
She fell shy of her goal of $300, which is enough to give 15 people clean drinking water. But she pledged to do better when her 10th birthday rolled around.
Tragically, Rachel was killed in a car accident in Seattle just a month after turning 9.
News of the tragedy — and Rachel’s birthday wish — made it around the world, and some 30,000 people gave more than $1.2 million to Rachel’s campaign.
Her mom, Samantha Paul, was blown away:
It made me realize how blessed I am even though I don’t have Rachel with me anymore.
And so on Monday, exactly one year after Rachel’s death, Paul continued her daughter’s campaign with a visit to a village in Ethiopia, where local partners were using funds from Rachel’s campaign to drill wells.
They also had commissioned a marble sign to honor her:
Rachel’s great dream, kindness and vision of a better world will live with and among us forever.
Sixty thousand people in more than 100 villages will drink clean water because of Rachel’s wish.