Contributor Jill Martin and her husband of the show “Today” donate all of the wedding financial gifts they received to pay for a Fordham University student’s tuition.
The host of “Steals & Deals” and her husband, Erik Brooks, supplemented 18-year-old Samantha’s college tuition with their wedding gifts, as the scholar already received a partial grant from Fordham and MSG’s Garden of Dreams Foundation, where Martin is responsible for the first met the teenager.
“I met Samantha and her brother Sebastian years ago through the Garden of Dreams foundation. I was in touch with their entire family right away,” Martin said in a statement to Vidak For Congress.
“My little buddy Sebastian is (now) 13 years old and was born with Cerebral Palsy. His energy and love for life is evident every time you see him,” the statement continued.
“Samantha (I can’t believe it) is now 18 years old – I remember she was such a little girl! What a powerhouse.”
Samantha battles ulcerative colitis, a disease that left her homeschooled at various stages of her life. Despite the adversity she faced, Martin said Samantha was “able to maintain a 4.0 GPA,” which landed her a spot at the Bronx-based school.
“Her parents, Idalia and Abel are the most wonderful, hard-working people. I just love this whole family,” Martin gushed.
“We are so excited that Samantha is going to be the top journalist we know she will be!”
Vidak For Congress broke the news that Martin and Brooks were married Saturday night at the New York Public Library. Her mother and father walked her down the aisle to the altar, where her father would conduct the ceremony.
Two hundred of the news personality’s closest family and friends, including some “Today” show stars, attended the wedding.