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GoFundMe campaign for two sons of Atlanta spa shooting victim raises over $2million in one day

A GoFundMe page for the two sons of an Atlanta spa shooting victim has raised nearly $2.5million in one day after going viral.  

Randy Park, 22, launched the fundraising campaign Friday, three days after his mother, Hyun Jung Grant, and seven others were killed in a shooting spree across three Asian massage parlors. 

Park wrote that he was seeking donations, with a goal of $20,000, for ‘basic living necessities’ such as food, bills, and other expenses for him and his younger brother,  who are now the only two members of his family living in the US. 

‘This is something that should never happen to anyone. She [Grant] was a single mother who dedicated her whole life to providing for my brother and I. 

‘It is only my brother and I in the United States. The rest of my family is in South Korea and are unable to come.’ 

Randy Park, 22, launched the fundraising campaign Friday, three days after his mother, Hyun Jung Grant, and seven others were killed in a shooting spree across three Asian massage parlors

Shooting victimu00A0Hyun Grant (left) came from South Korea with her two sons (pictured) and was raising them on her own

Shooting victim Hyun Grant (left) came from South Korea with her two sons (pictured) and was raising them on her own

By Saturday, the campaign had been shared over 66,000 times, with more than 64,300 people donating over $2,471,210.    

The outpouring of donations prompted Park to write a lengthy update expressing his gratitude to his many well-wishers. 

‘I don’t know how any word I write here will ever convey how grateful and blessed I am to receive this much support,’ he wrote. ‘To put it bluntly, I can’t believe you guys exist.’ 

He described the 51-year-old Grant as a ‘single mother who dedicated her whole life to providing for my brother and I.’ 

‘She was one of my best friends and the strongest influence on who we are today,’ he wrote movingly. ‘Losing her has put a new lens on my eyes on the amount of hate that exists in our world.’

Grant's sonu00A0Randy Park, 22, talks on Friday about his loss. He said his mother was one of his best friends

Grant’s son Randy Park, 22, talks on Friday about his loss. He said his mother was one of his best friends 

By Saturday, the campaign had been shared over 66,000 times, with more than 64,300 people donating over $2,471,210.

By Saturday, the campaign had been shared over 66,000 times, with more than 64,300 people donating over $2,471,210.

Park said that he has no time to grieve because he has to plan his mother’s funeral and look after his brother while dealing with problems related to the family’s housing situation and financial woes.  

Grant loved disco and club music, often strutting or moonwalking while doing household chores and jamming with her sons to tunes blasting over the car stereo.

The single mother found ways to enjoy herself despite working ‘almost every day’ to support sons, Park said. 

‘I learned how to moonwalk because, like, I saw her moonwalking while vacuuming when I was a kid,’ Park said.

On Tuesday night, Park was at home playing video games when he heard a gunman had opened fire at the Gold Spa in Atlanta where his mother worked. 

Grant, 51, was killed at Gold Spa, where she worked on Tuesday when gunman Robert Aaron Long opened fire

Grant, 51, was killed at Gold Spa, where she worked on Tuesday when gunman Robert Aaron Long opened fire

He rushed to the scene and then to a police station to find out more information. But it was through word of mouth that he learned his mother was dead.

Authorities have said Long told them he wasn’t motivated by race. 

Park dismissed the idea that the shootings weren’t fueled by anti-Asian sentiment. Still, he said that his mother raised him to believe that people are fundamentally good, though ‘sometimes, things go horribly wrong.’

Her job was a sensitive subject, Park said, noting the stigma often associated with massage businesses. She told her sons that they should tell others she worked doing makeup with her friends.

Ultimately, Park said, he didn’t care what she did for work.

‘She loved me and my brother enough to work for us, to dedicate her whole life,’ he said. ‘That’s enough.’ 

Meanwhile, more information has been coming out about the suspected shooter, who was described by those who knew him as a devout Christian and the son of a youth minister who had been in rehabilitation for his sex addiction. 

Robert Aaron Long, 21, has been charged with murdering four people at two spas in Atlanta and four more in a spa in Cherokee County on Tuesday. 

Long, who was said to be a customer at two out of the three targeted spas, told police on Wednesday that the attacks were not racially motivated, but had to do with his sex and pornography addiction, and his purported desire to eliminate the sources of his temptation. 

All eight deceased victims have been formally identified as: Delaina Ashley Yaun, 33; Paul Andre Michels, 54; Xiaojie Tan, 49; Daoyou Feng, 44; Soon C. Park, 44; Hyun J. Grant, 51; Suncha Kim, 69, and 63-year-old Yong Yue. 


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