Survivalist Who Stockpiled for 40 Years Makes Heartwarming Decision

Joseph Badame is donating his food, supplies to Puerto Rico hurricane victims
By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 2, 2017 10:50 AM CDT
Survivalist Who Stockpiled for 40 Years Makes Heartwarming Decision
Joseph Badame of Medford, NJ, helps during a food truck fundraiser for the people of Puerto Rico in the aftermath of Hurricane Maria at Anthony Barber and Victoria Martinez-Barber's home on Friday.   (Elizabeth Robertson/The Philadelphia Inquirer via AP)

For four decades, Joseph Badame and wife Phyliss stocked their house and other buildings on their Medford, NJ, property with enough food, water, coal, and other supplies to keep 100 friends and family members alive and comfortable for the indefinite future, all in anticipation of a possible economic doomsday scenario. But reports Phyliss died in 2013, and the bank is now preparing to foreclose on the property. Instead of letting everything in his DIY bunker go to waste, the 74-year-old made a more charitable decision: donate it to hurricane victims in Puerto Rico. It was Victoria Martinez-Barber, the food vendor for his estate sale, who sparked the idea, after she mentioned to Badame that all of the proceeds from her food truck were being sent to her now-homeless family in Arecibo.

Badame at first offered $100 to help her out, but then he revealed his food storage area—and an idea was born. "I saw everything that my family would need," an emotional Martinez-Barber says. Badame realized the food was just going to get "trashed," so he gave permission for Martinez-Barber and her husband to take his stockpile. Per the Philadelphia Inquirer, he's got 70 barrels of food, and each barrel has enough in it to feed 84 people for four months. "Phyliss and I prepared all this for one group of people and it turns out it's going to help another group of people. That's wonderful," he says. For her part, Martinez-Barber and her husband have let Badame move onto their property in his RV, and she marvels at his generosity. has Badame's full story, including pics of his 8,500-square-foot survivalist abode. (More uplifting news stories.)

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