One day the Robles brothers’ mom told them the unthinkable. She said, “Here’s $20, I bought you guys some groceries. I’m leaving.” That was it.
They never saw her again and the three brothers, whose dad was in jail, were put into foster care. They were separated but Jose, who was only 12, vowed to reunite him and his brothers.
He told himself that one day he would buy his own house, he would take care of his own brothers, and no one would ever split them up again.
So he started working in 8th grade. He worked odd jobs, and at 24 he became the assistant branch manager at the Lemon Grove Library in San Diego. Over the course of 10 years he saved up $15,000 to place a down payment on a foreclosed home.
It wasn’t a nice home, but it was his. He kept his promise. Diane Cox, of Just In Time, an organization that helps foster kids, noticed.
“We knew this house was in great disrepair. So we put out the word and people just started volunteering,” Diane told CBS’ Steve Hartman. The volunteers got a new carpet, cabinets, paint, and appliances. Then, after 12 long years apart, Jose, Mario, and Juan were together again. Mario and Juan had no idea Jose had planned this.
“It’s exactly how I expected,” Jose said. “We argue. It’s great. We’re a family.”
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