SAN DIEGO COUNTY, Calif. — Rick Lyon played music at Imperial House for around 17 years until he got down on his luck.
Fans of Lyon will recognize his voice and talent on the electronic keyboard.
"We had a big fan base and crowds on weekends," said Lyon. "Covid came in and the bar and restaurant shut down and shut down for a year. After I lost my job, I lost the room I was living in. I stayed at a motel and after my money exhausted, I lived inside my car for 4-5 months. I just toughed it out. It's better than being out there on the street. There's people out there on the street with nothing, at least I had my car."
He parked his car outside Denny’s and that’s where his waitress Susan Gurule noticed him.
"Everyday when I walked outside, Rick was sitting outside in his car. He had the most kindest eyes," said Gurule.
That’s when she decided to make a post on Facebook.
"I wanted to see him get off the street. I even tried to get him resources like food stamps," said Gurule.
Rick Lyon fan, Jeremy Cooke, saw the Facebook post and posted this video on YouTube.
Cooke started a GoFundMe page that has raised more than $30,000.
"It showed the power of community and how many people were touched by his music," said Cooke.
"I think it's awesome. You plant a seed and God will multiply it," said Gurule.
Lyon has fallen on some hard times. He said he and his ex-wife got into a bad car wreck and she miscarried what would have been his first child.
"I have no family. I no longer have relatives in California," said Lyon.
He has a family of fans to thank now.
"I gained a new friend for sure. I want to see him be okay and to be stable," said Gurule.
He is hoping to land a music gig very soon.
"I want to get back into music. I like music the best. It's more rewarding for me not just financially, but emotionally," said Lyon.
To make a donation to support Rick Lyon, click here.