Community raises money to give car to needy San Ramon family

SAN RAMON, Calif. -- A San Ramon family is having a merrier Christmas than they ever thought possible.

A group of community members came together to bring them a gift they desperately needed -- a second car.

Santa Claus had already come and gone, but the Bolton family was in for a big surprise Christmas Day, a surprise so big it took a moment to sink in.

"Oh my God!," said Cora Bolton as she stood stunned looking at the keys to her new car.

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For Bolton, the new car is the key to a better life for her twin six-year-old grandsons.

Bolton works nights and her daughter Deirdra works the day shift. Together, they've been caring for Deirdra's twin sons, Justin and Jamir, while sharing a single car.

"It was just really, really hard, with the one car, with my daughter picking me up at BART, 10:30, 11 at night, you know with the boys," Cora Bolton said.

The idea to raise money began in Jamir's first grade classroom and quickly spread to the community on Facebook.

"People I don't even know were sending money via PayPal and dropping off gifts and it's the community of people. It's really the love of God at work," Wendy Hagen, a classroom volunteer, said.

The class didn't have to spend all that money they raised to buy the car. They found a nonprofit that was willing to donate the car. All of the money raised will go into a fund to keep the car running and insured for years to come.

For days, they'd been hiding the car and their excitement.

"It's the best Christmas gift that I can receive is giving to others and it's amazing," said Jamir's teacher Lindsay Wagner.

"Truly a Christmas miracle that I could have never, never, never imagined," Cora Bolton said.
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