News Column

Bon Jovi Donates $1 Million to Sandy Relief

July 9, 2013
Bon Jovi Donates $1 Million to Sandy Relief

The famous New Jersey rocker with liberal leanings put his arm around Republican Gov. Christie, walked down a Sandy-damaged street to greet giddy residents, then announced a $1 million donation for Sandy relief.

No, not that famous New Jersey rocker.

While Christie and his far more liberal musical idol, Bruce Springsteen, publicly reconciled their differences in the aftermath of Sandy, the storm also brought Christie together with another New Jersey rock-and-roll name: Jon Bon Jovi.

Bon Jovi, a philanthropist whose foundation has been active in Philadelphia, returned Monday to his hometown of Sayreville, which was ravaged by the storm, to announce that he and his bandmates were donating $1 million to the Hurricane Sandy New Jersey Relief Fund.

To the perfectly fitting backdrop of the Bon Jovi song "Who Says You Can't Go Home," the governor and the rock star walked out of the front doors of the borough hall to a cheering crowd of more than 100 residents standing under a blazing sun.

Introduced by Mayor Kennedy O'Brien, Bon Jovi offered brief remarks before pulling a $1 million check out of his pocket.

"I know $1 million sounds like a lot, but it's really just a drop in the bucket," Bon Jovi said. "And I know that there are people that are still suffering. "

Christie's wife, Mary Pat, the chairwoman of the relief fund, collected the check and said she had so far raised $38 million from 29,000 people.

When Christie visited Sayreville in the storm's aftermath, residents pleaded with him to provide funds so their homes -- hit by floods one too many times -- could be bought out. Christie promised Monday that as many as 300 buyouts would start soon.

Bon Jovi's money, though, may help those on Patton Avenue, where residents told Christie and Bon Jovi about basement and first-floor flooding.

Source: (c)2013 The Philadelphia Inquirer. Distributed by MCT Information Services.

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