KENWOOD —After a ribbon-cutting ceremony celebrating the re-opening of her McDonald's restaurant Yolanda Travis then presented the parents of Hadiya Pendleton with a $1,000 check.
"I want to help make a difference in the lives of our youth and this check for $1,000 is my investment in that effort," Travis told Nathaniel and Cleopatra Cowley-Pendleton Friday at her restaurant at 740 E. 47th St. "I know this check is in good hands and will be used wisely on behalf of the Hadiya Pendleton Foundation."
The newly created foundation named after slain teenager Hadiya Pendleton is in its early stages, but will provide wrap-around social, economic and education services. People can donate to the 501(c) 3 nonprofit online or by mailing their donation to 47 W. Polk St., Suite 100-547, Chicago IL 60605, Cowley-Pendleton said.
Both Nathaniel and Cleopatra thanked Travis for her donation and encouraged the crowd attending the event to do more to help young people.
"They need us. The youth today are up against some incredible odds and we have to be there for them," Cowley-Pendleton said. "A parent cannot be with their child at all times and that is why it is so important that we look out for one another's child."
Nathaniel Pendleton said male youths are most at-risk.
"The hunt is on for young males and we have to protect them from becoming victims of crime," he said.
The Pendletons were joined at the check presentation by their 10-year-old son along with Ald. Will Burns (4th), whose ward includes the McDonald's restaurant, and majorettes and band members from King College Preparatory High School where Hadiya was a student before being shot to death January 2013.
"I miss her. We all do and that is why we are fighting so hard to prevent another innocent child from being taken away from their family," Cowley-Pendleton said.