It’s a bittersweet day for popular radio host Kidd Kraddick’s daughter. It’s the biggest fundraiser of the year for his beloved charity: Kidd’s Kids. Caroline Cradick’s carrying on without her dad after he died suddenly three months ago. His legacy lives on.
Volunteers are answering the call to help Kidd’s Kids at Southwest Airlines Wednesday where a phone bank was set up until 1 p.m. It's a cause that meant so much Cradick's dad.
"His whole life was helping these kids," said Cradick. Cradick’s dad spent 22 years of his life helping kids with special medical needs. His little girl was the inspiration for Kidd’s Kids.
"When my mom was pregnant, they thought something was going to be wrong with me. When I was born healthy, they said we need to pay back these children that weren't as fortunate," said Cradick.
Now, after her dad's death he is her inspiration to continue to grow the foundation. They started with two families in 1991. Next month, Cradick will host 50 kids and their families during their annual trip to Disney World.
"It's just amazing. My dad, he really laid the groundwork for us, and it's kind of a well-oiled machine at this point. We just have to keep going. Our mission is just to make it bigger every year," said Cradick.
That means breaking last year's 3,000 calls to the phone bank, which brought in $80,000. As of 6 p.m., supporters had donated more than $200,000 dollars to Kidd's Kids.The fundraising week as a whole raised $530,000 for the foundation.
Southwest Airlines donates the flights for the kids, like Marcos Saldana. The double lung transplant recipient took the trip in 2008 and is giving back by volunteering at the phone bank. "It's very emotional for everyone. Of course, it's not the same. He wants this to go on," said Saldana.
The Kidd Kraddick in the Morning show dedicated Wednesday's broadcast to the foundation.
Cradick knows, her dad would be proud. "I feel the love from him today. I woke up this morning, and I was like, 'If I should be doing anything, it's this,'" she said.
Raising Cane's is also donating 15 percent of Wednesday's restaurant net proceeds to Kidd's Kids.