A group of Louisiana State University fraternity brothers always felt their fraternity house cook was like a mother. So when they discovered she has been working two jobs to pay off her mortgage, they decided to help. Alumnae of Phi Gamma Delta learned their former cook, Jessie Hamilton, now 73, had 16 years left on her mortgage. To make the payments, she was working as a cleaner at Baton Rouge Memorial Airport, and as a cook at a country club. She needed $45,000 to pay it off.
During her years at the FIJI house, from 1982 to 1996, Hamilton, a single mother of three, would start her day at 4 a.m. to get to campus in time to have the boys breakfast, lunch and dinner ready. She was a listening ear, who also drove them to doctor's appointments. She stayed in touch with some of them, including Andrew Fusaiotti, 52, who owns a car dealership in Mobile, Alabama. When he heard of her need, he alerted his fraternity brothers, and in the end, 91 brothers donated an average of $560 each to give their former cook $51,765 -- enough to pay off her mortage plus $6,765 to enjoy. She said, "They used to tell me they loved me, and now they've proved it."
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