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Big Gift From Philando Castile's Mom to Students in Debt

Valerie Castile presents $8K donation to Minneapolis-area school to pay seniors' lunch tabs
By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff
Posted May 3, 2019 1:17 PM CDT

(Newser) – It's been almost three years since the police shooting death of Philando Castile in Minnesota, and while the upcoming anniversary will be a sad one, the memory of the generous cafeteria supervisor continues to inspire good. Castile's mom, Valerie Castile, offered up a check Thursday for $8,000 to Robbinsdale Cooper High School in the Minneapolis suburb of New Hope, per CBS Minnesota. The money will be spent to wipe out the lunch debts of all seniors at the school, a requirement to graduate.

"This is something that Philando held near and dear to his heart," said Valerie Castile, speaking for the Philando Castile Relief Foundation as she presented the check. Her son was known for paying for kids' lunches out of his own pocket when they didn't have enough money for the day. The Chicago Tribune notes the purpose of the foundation, which is to assist gun violence survivors and also to wipe out school lunch debt in the St. Paul-Minneapolis area. Robbinsdale Area Schools alone has a $300,000 total debt, minus the $8,000 the foundation just donated. (It's not the first time Castile's memory has prompted a lunch debt payoff in the St. Paul area.)

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