Famed golfer pays off 50 students' lunch debt



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WILTON, N.Y. (AP) — Famed golfer Dottie Pepper paid off all outstanding school lunch debt for a few dozen elementary students in upstate New York, just in time for the new year.

More than 50 students at Dorothy Nolan Elementary School in Saratgoa Springs had their lunch debt wiped out by the professional golfer, the Times Union reported Monday.

“It’s debt that didn’t need to be sitting there, burdening people,” Pepper said. “I just thought it’s been a really good year for my husband and I and if we can make it a little easier for families that didn’t have much on the holidays."

She added, “It was just a good thing to do."

Around 18% of students at the school district are eligible for free lunch and another 2% are eligible for reduced lunch prices, according to state education department data.

The CBS Sports broadcaster declined to say how much she donated to erase the lunch bills at the Saratoga Springs City School District elementary school.

Both Pepper and her sister attended the elementary school and her grandfathers sat on the board that established the school.

“Our district is pleased to be able to accept many generous donations throughout the school year. These donations are reflection of the wonderful community that we live in," Superintendent of Schools Michael Patton said.

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The Associated Press

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