Tech billionaire gives $ 180,000 to “River Dave”


“I start to cry every time I think about it.”

David Lidstone, 81, received $ 180,000 from a tech company after his cabin burned down. AP Photo / Steven Senne

CONCORD, NH (AP) – The CEO of a billionaire software company gave a former New Hampshire hermit – known as River Dave ”- $ 180,000 to rebuild his cabin in a new location.

Alexander Karp, CEO of Palantir Technologies, handed a personal check to David Lidstone last week, Lidstone’s friend Jodie Gedeon said on Facebook. A spokesperson for the data analysis software company confirmed the donation to Concord Monitor.

“How do I express myself and express my gratitude for something like this?” I start to cry every time I think about it, ”Lidstone told The Monitor. “For an old lumberjack who always had to work, for someone to give you that kind of money, it’s unbelievably hard for me to understand. “

There has been a surge of support for Lidstone since he was jailed on July 15 and charged with squatting for nearly 30 years on property owned by a man in Vermont. His cabin burned down this month shortly before his release, but he was recently granted temporary accommodation for the winter.

The location is being kept under wraps to protect Lidstone’s privacy, Gedeon said. But supporters will have the chance to meet Lidstone at a thank you event in Warner, New Hampshire on Saturday.

Lidstone, for his part, said he didn’t think he could become a hermit again. “Maybe the things I tried to avoid are the things I really need in life,” he told The Associated Press.

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