ROCK ISLAND, Illinois — People who know James "Snoop" Ramirez will tell you he makes the best Mexican food, specifically, chips and salsa on either side of the Mississippi. His neighbor, VaLora Richardson, is one of those people.
Richardson says Snoop is just an all around nice guy who cooks for the homeless and would do anything for anyone. She says he is the type of neighbor that shovels everyone's sidewalks and scrapes their windshields.
She's known Snoop for 20 years.
"VaLora [Richardson] thank you for nominating James Ramirez, also known as Snoop, a guy who I consider to have sazon, muy bien sazon, which means very good flavor," said Alvaro Macias, Assistant Vice President of Community Development at Ascentra Credit Union. "He’s good in the kitchen, but most importantly, he’s very good to other people. He helps people who are homeless, he helps his neighbors, he does so much for others, he has a really big heart - he really exemplifies the listening, caring and doing what’s right that we value at Acentra Credit Union. For that reason, I’d like to present you with $300 so that you may Pay it Forward."
Richardson then went to Snoop's home to surprise him with the $300 she had just received. Snoop was speechless to get the money from his friend.
"Unbelievable, I am lost for words, and if people know me, I talk a lot," said Snoop.
He immediately said the money will go towards making more than 200 meals for Christian Care Homeless Shelter.
"There's such a need in the Quad City area," said Snoop. "We sit here, we've got a beautiful house, beautiful whatever, and there's a lot of people, women and kids who don't have nothing."
Snoop says his mom is his inspiration.
"I am blessed. I get up every morning. I got everything I could want. So you have to give back. My mamá always said, 'you get to a certain point in life you gotta turn around and help the next person in line'. That’s what you gotta’ do," he said.
Pay it Forward goes to a person in the WQAD viewing area who goes above and beyond to help people in his or her community. If you know of someone who deserves to be nominated, go to this link. If you are chosen, WQAD will contact you.