VISALIA, Calif. (KSEE) –A Central Valley street vendor is back on his feet after the community raised thousands of dollars for a new prosthetic leg.
“This is my new fruit stand,” shares Guillermo Lozano, who sells fruit cups and snacks on the corner of Avenue 328 and Road 124 in Visalia.
The 47-year-old has been on a road to recovery ever since he lost his right leg in a car accident 16 years ago. For years, he was limping on an old prosthetic held together by duct tape and rope.
But after a customer came across his old flower stand in Madera in late 2020, they launched a GoFundMe account to raise money for a new leg. Guillermo’s story went viral, raising $21,743 dollars in just a few days.
“I want to tell everyone that helped me, I’m very happy and grateful,” he shared in Spanish. “I would’ve never expected this.”
He moved to the United States from Mexico 30 years ago, working as a farm working for years before losing his leg.
“Vine a triunfar,” he says. “I came to succeed.”
Today, Guillermo is reinventing himself once again –from learning to walk again, to debuting a new fruit stand, he says he is happy he gets to call the Central Valley –where he is embraced by the community –home.