"The people that we are donating the money to, they need the money more than we do. No kid should have cancer," Austin Lettner said
Two Ohio brothers earned thousands of dollars after putting their giant hog up for auction, but chose not to spend the money on video games, clothes or electronics. Instead, they donated it all to charity.
When Austin Lettner, 14, and his younger sibling, Logan, decided to auction off their 230-pound hog named Millhouse at the 2019 Medina County Fair on Sunday, the brothers had something special in mind, they told FOX8.
“One day my parents just asked me, well asked me and Logan, if we wanted to keep the money for our pigs or donate it,” Austin explained. “And we said donate the money.”
Though they only expected to earn about $1,000 for their hog, the brothers instead raised much, much more — all of which will go to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, which specializes in treating childhood cancer and other life-threatening diseases.
“The people that we are donating the money to, they need the money more than we do,” Austin said. “No kid should have cancer.”
When the auction for the hog began, bids quickly skyrocketed to $3,000, FOX8 reported. Then, as time winded down, organizers announced that anyone who wanted to donate an additional dollar per pound for the hog was free to do so, with all the extra proceeds going straight to the hospital.
After the announcement, 20 people donated an additional $230, and the total bid for the hog more than doubled. One bidder even put in an extra $500.
“It was a sea of cards that just came up,” dad Jamie Lettner told the news station. “They are not farmers. They run gravel pits, they run shoe stores and to have them come out and put that money back into their community, it’s a beautiful thing.”
“All the way through here there wasn’t a dry eye from the biggest, burliest men to the highest-paid guy in here,” he added. “Everybody was just tearing up and crying, they were so proud of these boys and themselves. They should be extremely proud of themselves for coming and supporting these children. Not just mine, but all of them.”
In the end, the boys raised $11,000 for St. Jude’s, and the bidder who won the hog donated him to a local charity so its meat can be used to feed the needy.
“It’s just so heartwarming,” mom Stacey Lettner told FOX8. “It makes you feel good as a parent that my children chose to donate some of their money, instead of keeping it for themselves.”