Betty Kwan Chinn of Eureka, California receives the 2010 Citizens Medal, the nation's second-highest civilian honor, from U.S. President Barack Obama in the East Room of the White House August 4, 2010 in Washington, DC. Chinn, an immigrant from China aids those without shelter also providing meals twice a day.
Betty Chinn, was also one of the Winners of the 2008 Minerva Awards
Every morning for the past 23 years, Betty Chinn has loaded up her truck and headed out to feed the least fortunate residents of Eureka, California. But Betty delivers more than just food and hot coffee. She also serves up kindness.
Born in China, Betty was separated from her family at age 7 during Mao Zedong's brutal Cultural Revolution. Tormented by hunger and lack of social contact, Betty went mute. After four terrifying years, Betty escaped from China by walking 1,600 miles to Hong Kong. Though she had just $20 in her hand, Betty later made her way to America and found her voice again.
Betty has never forgotten what it felt like to have nothing and no one, and she continues to help her neighbors, one person at a time. "They are all my friends; they are all my family," she says.
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