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Friday, September 22

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Event Mon Jan 20 2014

South Side McDonald's Owner Donates $1,000 to Hadiya's Foundation

Pendleton Family & Yolanda Travis; photo courtesy of Charles Jackson.

For Yolanda Travis, the grand re-opening of her newly redesigned McDonald's restaurant at 740 E. 47th St. was not only a cause for celebration--it was also a reason to give back.

At the festive event, Travis presented a $1,000 check for "Hadiya's Foundation," to Nathaniel and Cleopatra Pendleton, parents of King College Preparatory High School student, Hadiya Pendelton, who was slain near the school last January. Happening shortly after she, along with the rest of the school's marching band performed at inaugural events for President Barack Obama's second term, her murder, which made national headlines, cast an even brighter spotlight on the violence that plagues Chicago.

For Mrs. Pendleton, the celebration was a reminder of the support given to her and her family. "It's absolutely amazing and humbling that it's been 12 months and they still remember my baby." Hadiya's Foundation, which is "dedicated to creating positive change and opportunity for all children," was incorporated soon after her death. "The foundation was established right away," said Pendleton. "It's a work in progress."

Alderman Will Burns (4th), who was in attendance, acknowledged Travis for her support for not only King, but also the community as a whole: "I just want to thank Yolanda for making this investment in our community. It's really important that folks have a great place to come eat, hang out, have a cup of coffee, talk to their neighbors--I really appreciate your support for Hadiya's Foundation and everything you've done for our community."

Members of the King Marching Band, led by director Benjamin Washington, provided entertainment for the crowd; for Washington, the celebration was also about the students and fellow marching band members. "I'm very proud to be here--and the students are very proud." Of Hadiya, specifically, Washington noted, "She brought a lot of energy to our organization. She brought the energy and passion that we try to get kids to have, especially those who are forced to deal with the distractions of social environments."

For more information on Hadiya's Foundation, visit the website or call 855-4hadiya (855-442-3492).

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