Fraternity brothers pay off house cook’s mortgage
Jessie Hamilton worked as a cook at a Louisiana State University fraternity over three decades ago.
When the fraternity brothers heard Hamilton was still working two jobs at age 74, they decided it was their time to give back to the woman that was like a mother to them all those years ago.
Roughly 90 members of Phi Gamma Delta, or Fiji, chipped in $51,765 to pay off Hamilton’s mortgage, with each brother donating around $600 to $1,000 on average. About a dozen members of the fraternity surprised Hamilton with the money in Baker, Louisiana on April 3, just before her 74th birthday.
The fraternity brothers had special T-shirts made for the occasion. They played a “Let’s Make a Deal” style game with her, but all of the doors were winning ones for Hamilton.
Behind one door was the T-shirts with “Jessie Hamilton Day” on them and a catered lunch from a local seafood restaurant. The next door had an oversized check for $6,675, and the final one was the big check for $45,000.
“That shows how they all felt about her,” said Andrew Fusaiotti, who was a member of the fraternity in the late 1980s. “Jessie is one of these people that shows up to work and always has a smile on her face, eager to please and never complains.”
Hamilton spent 14 years working as a cook for the fraternity from 1982-1986, but she also helped students with rides to the grocery store and doctor’s appointments. She was 60 when she purchased her first home in 2006 with a 30-year mortgage.
She originally planned to continue working until the home was paid off. Now, she plans to retire and take a trip to Hawaii.
“This has been a blessing to me,” Hamilton said. “I have been worrying about how I was going to pay my house off. I am grateful for what God has done and has led them to do for me.”