MYRTLE BEACH, S.C. (WYFF) -Organizers of a GoFundMe fundraiser -- claiming to be the owners of the red Jeep that got stuck on Myrtle Beach as Hurricane Dorian approached the Carolina coast — are raising money.
Instead of a new set of wheels, donations are going toward hurricane relief efforts in the Bahamas, where the Category 5 storm destroyed part of the island nation.
“We may have lost a vehicle but that is small in comparison to what others have lost during this storm," organizer Dee Horrell wrote. “In honor of the red Jeep, we will be donating all funds to UNICEF (100% tax deductible) to help with the disaster relief in the Bahamas, as well as a direct wire transfer through the Bahamian government.”
The Jeep became a viral sensation Thursday as onlookers watched waves pummel the vehicle. Many questioned how the Jeep got on the beach.
“…this incident was a complete accident. It was in no way done on purpose for publicity, nor was it for an insurance claim,” Horrell said.
Last week, the owner, who did not want his name released, told WMBF reporter Patrick Lloyd that he loaned the Jeep to his cousin, who decided to drive on the beach and take pictures of the sunrise before the storm, but the car got stuck, according to WMBF.
“He avoided me for a good hour or two because he didn’t know what to say and then police actually came to the house," the Jeep's owner told WMBF. "And they said, ‘Hey we found your Jeep on the beach.’ Then I called him and spoke to him and he told me exactly what happened. It’s probably going to end up being totaled. I didn’t want it totaled. The Jeep is an awesome Jeep."
The city towed the Jeep away Friday.
“Please help us help those in need,” Horrell said. “Thank you for the memes, and to the man who played the bagpipe — we love you!”
As of Sunday morning, the fundraiser has raised $820 of its $10,000 goal.