A South Carolina innkeeper has given away over $50,000 in free hotel stays since Hurricane Florence brought torrential rains and flooding to the region.
There’s generosity, like giving away your hard-earned money to help victims of natural disasters, and then there’s generosity like Jaret Hucks, who has taken upon himself to turn his place of employment into a veritable island of solace for refugees evacuating from the destruction of Hurricane Florence.
Jaret owns the Midtown Inn and Cottages in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. Since Hurricane Florence made landfall in the middle of September, he’s opened his hotel to hundreds of people, and according to CBS, given upwards of 1,000 free nights stays. Tally that up for his usual nightly rate, and that totals roughly $50,000 of free lodging.
And Jaret doesn’t limit his customers to humans either. He forgoes the “No Pets” policy and even allows everyone’s critters a nice, dry place to sleep. Pets range from dogs and cats to more exotic types like turtles and reptiles. There’s even one rescued squirrel by the name of Mr. Squeakers that has enjoyed the comforts of Midtown Inn and Cottages.
“Love thy neighbor, right? That’s what you’re supposed to do,” Hucks said in an interview. “My mama taught me that a long time ago.”
Jaret’s hospitality has had a snowball effect on the residents of Myrtle Beach. Other folks have come to the Midtown Inn to make donations for evacuees--everything from food, ice, and clothing to more esoteric things like free haircuts and running shoes. Even though they’re refugees, the residents of the Midtown Inn want for practically nothing.
Three square meals are provided every day thanks to donations from the townsfolk.
Parents and guests are even helping out, performing housekeeping and chores that would normally be performed by Jaret’s staff. He appreciates the efforts, and the many thanks he receives, but the best “thank you” comes from the crayon-written notes from the dozens of children now housed at the Midtown Inn & Cottages.
There’s no word on how long residents will stay, but hopefully, they’ll be able to head to their real homes soon.