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SACRAMENTO, Calif. — Pitbull and Common headlined Gov.-elect Gavin Newsom's inauguration benefit concert for wildfire survivors at the Golden 1 Center in Sacramento, bringing in nearly $5 million for recovery efforts.
Newsom spoke to the thousands of people who attended the event, many of whom were survivors, volunteers and first responders of the recent Camp Fire in Butte County. Butte County Sheriff Korey Honea and Paradise Mayor Jody Jones were also in attendance.
“They are the antidote to the fear and cynicism,” Newsom said of the Camp Fire first responders “They are that manifestation of why government matters and you should care. We thank our men and women in uniform.”
Jesse Vandegriff, a 15-year firefighter veteran said the 2018 fire season was the worst he’s ever seen and he appreciated the support from his fellow Californians.
“A lot of tears have been shed,” Vandegriff said. “It’s very hard having worked in the county for 15 years, seeing something get wiped off the map changes your life forever. I’ll never forget that day.”
Stephen Murray survived the Camp Fire in Paradise, but his family lost their home. The maintenance worker has been credited with helping dozens of senior citizens evacuate from a mobile home park.
He’s since started a charity to help senior fire survivors into housing.
“I’ve been able to go to the shelter, get people out of the shelter and find them homes,” Murray said.
Money raised during the event will support the long-term needs of survivors.
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