Cleveland hero Charles Ramsey: 'I'm broke'
Credited with helping save 3 kidnap victims, he says he spent money on a BMW and creditors are hounding him.
Charles Ramsey, the Cleveland man who rocketed to attention in May after aiding in the rescue of three women held for years by the alleged kidnapper Ariel Castro, says the good fortune that followed has turned to dust.
Ramsey, 45, told the Daily Mail his life has been upended since the rescue, complaining that he can't keep a job because of the attention he receives. One restaurant fired him because so many people went into the kitchen to shake his hand, he said.
"I'm broke, bro, and that's the truth," he told the publication.
If Ramsey's story has a familiar ring, that's probably because his rise and apparent fall echo those of big lottery winners, who are more likely to go bankrupt than people winning small prizes. Ramsey's sudden fame prompted him to buy an $8,000 BMW, and he now says he's stopped answering his phone because of creditors.
Ramsey has earned $30,000 in donations from well-wishers and for corporate speaking engagements, according to the report. Yet he's also said to be booked for several more speaking dates, which could bring him an additional $50,000 and seems to undercut his claims of being strapped.
But Ramsey told TV station WUSA that the Daily Mail got one thing wrong: He's not homeless. He said he still has a Cleveland home but is couch surfing with friends and relatives because so many people were knocking at his door.
In the meantime, Ramsey isn't likely to go hungry. Several restaurants vowed to provide free burgers for life, including McDonald's (MCD), which he repeatedly mentioned in his account of rescuing the women.
Ramsey offered a piece of advice he's learned over the past two months: "Only a fool and his money parts. Money goes fast if you have bills."
Follow Aimee Picchi on Twitter at @aimeepicchi.
chances are he was broke prior to his fame, so what's the problem bro.
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Reports say the generous benefactor behind the huge gratuities is a former PayPal executive.
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