A homeless man whose selfless act of using his last $20 to fill up the gas tank of a stranded motorist got him worldwide attention and an unexpected windfall says he’s still struggling with addiction.
Six months ago, Johnny Bobbitt Jr.’s act of kindness was the subject of a GoFundMe page that went viral. The woman he helped, Kate McClure, set it up as a way to give back to him, and more than $400,000 was donated by over 14,000 people.
Bobbitt and McClure appeared on shows like “Good Morning America” and were interviewed by the BBC.
McClure and her boyfriend Mark D’Amico set up two trusts for him and hired him a lawyer and a financial adviser.
Bobbitt tells The Philadelphia Inquirer that instead of a house he bought a new camper, which is parked on land owned by McClure’s family. The dream truck he wanted didn’t materialize, and the one he settled on needs a filter and isn’t running. And he doesn’t have a driver’s license anyway.
He told the newspaper he used “a small amount” of the donated money to buy heroin and opioids, but now he’s in rehab and has been clean for three weeks.
McClure and D’Amico now ration the money they give him for daily living.
“I don’t want him to do anything stupid,” D’Amico said last week. “He’s a drug addict. That’s like me handing him a loaded gun. He has to do what he has to do to get his life together.”
The camper and the truck are both registered in McClure’s name, D’Amico said.
Bobbitt is enrolled in an outpatient drug program that involves daily counseling, group meetings and drug testing. McClure and D’Amico take him to meetings and he said he appreciates the help.
“I didn’t get involved in drugs overnight,” Bobbitt said as he stood outside the white SolAire camper. “It’s going to be a struggle for the rest of my life.”
He said he dreams of driving his new camper across the country to start anew in Montana.
“I want to experience life. That’s why I bought a camper so I could go hunting and fishing,” Bobbitt said. “My dream is to be on a little piece of land somewhere.”