93-Year-Old Woman Fighting To Keep Family’s Land Reaches $350K Fundraising Goal

A 93-year-old woman living on Hilton Head Island, South Carolina, has received more than $350,000 to help keep her from losing her home.

As it stands, Josephine Wright surpassed her fundraising goal by $11,810 on GoFundMe. These funds will go toward paying attorney fees. Developer Bailey Point Investment Group filed a lawsuit in February 2023 to force Wright to sell her family’s land so the company could develop a 147-unit residential subdivision.

That money will come in handy. The Island Packet reports that according to a court document, Bailey Point Investment Group and Wright must enter mediation or arbitration within 300 days from the September 18 filing date.

In May, Wright’s granddaughter Charise Graves went online, hoping to raise $350,000 via GoFundMe for Wright’s stand. Donations poured in, including $40,000 from Dallas Mavericks guard Kyrie Irving, who recently donated an additional $24,240 WSAVreported.

Other celebrities who donated include rapper Snoop Dogg, filmmaker, actor and playwright Tyler Perry, and rapper Meek Mill.

The GoFundMe states that the money will go toward “the cost of her [Josephine Wright’s] attorneys, cover any property taxes, and construct a fence to create a barrier between Grandma’s [Josephine Wright’s] property and the new development, which has recently paved a road 22ft from her back porch. An area that was once acres of untouched forest, swampland, and refuge to Hilton Head’s diverse wildlife.”

According to WSAV, Wright said that the land has been in her family since just after the Civil War. Black people have historically had a strained relationship with land ownership in America. Land ownership is a big part of wealth transfer. Stephanie Hagans said, according to Inequality.org, “When they steal your land, they steal your future.”

Hagans’ family lost 35 acres of land in Matthews, North Carolina, in 1942. The site that has tracked inequality-related news and views for nearly two decades noted that Blacks had 90 percent of their land stolen from them by the 21st century.