Tech CU and its employees raise $5,890 to help member Jimmy Duarte buy a new wheelchair
San Jose, CA (January 19, 2010) — When it comes to giving, credit unions and their employees can be among the most generous. This was never more evident than on Thursday, January 14, when Tech CU employees gave a check for $5,890 to one of the credit union’s members, Jimmy Duarte, as a contribution to help him replace his wheelchair, which had been broken in an accident.
Duarte has cerebral palsy but that hasn’t kept him from being active in wheelchair sports and summer camp programs for youth. He has also been a regular, friendly face for the employees at Tech CU’s Financial Center in Cupertino.
“Jimmy is always coming in with a smile on his face,” said Joe Fleige, a financial consultant for Tech CU. “He’s a very positive and inspiring person.” Unfortunately, Duarte suffered an accident last fall that damaged his already 8-year-old wheelchair to the point of near destruction. The accident occurred as he was rolling through an intersection in Cupertino and was hit by a driver who did not see him until the last minute. Duarte was knocked out of his chair but was able to pull himself to the curb. Luckily he didn’t suffer any major injuries, but Duarte’s chair was severely damaged.
“He came into the branch after being gone for awhile,” continued Fleige, “and when I asked him where he’d been, he told me about the accident. I knew immediately that I wanted to help him get a new wheelchair.”
Inspired by Jimmie’s positive attitude and his unflagging commitment to help other disabled youth, Fleige decided to rally his fellow coworkers at Tech CU to raise money for the purchase of a new chair. The community of Silicon Valley also responded when Duarte’s story was told in the San Jose Mercury News, as part of its Wish Book program. For nearly three decades, Mercury News readers have helped their neighbors achieve their dreams through donations to the Wish Book.
As a result of donations to the Wish Book program and helped by Tech CU’s generous contribution, the amount needed to purchase a new state-of-the art chair for Jimmie—more than $21,000—has been raised.
Jimmie expressed his gratitude this way, “This whole thing has really changed my outlook—seeing all the people who have come forward to help me. It makes me feel that I really do make a difference”.
For the community of Cupertino, readers of the Mercury News and the employees of Technology Credit Union, that has never been in question.
ABOUT TECHNOLOGY CREDIT UNIONTechnology Credit Union is a full-service financial institution serving individuals who work, live, go to school or regularly worship in Santa Clara, Alameda, Contra Costa, Santa Cruz, San Mateo and San Francisco counties. Tech CU was started in 1960 and is now among the top 1 percent of the nation’s largest credit unions. It is recognized as one of the best managed and strongest financial institutions in the country, as indicated by Tech CU’s 5-star rating from Bauer Financial, the nation’s largest independent rating service for banks and credit unions. With more than 78,000 members, over $1.2 billion in assets and 10 full-service branches around the Bay Area, Tech CU is a leader in the credit union industry.
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