Nico, a homeless musician often seen playing his violin in the Prado, was robbed at knifepoint earlier this week while he was sleeping, according to neighbors. Nico said that drug addicts come through the Prado late at night to rob the homeless that sleep there. Among items taken was his violin – his only source of income. Given to him by his mother, the violin is 125 years old.
Neighbors around the North End are now fundraising to help Nico replace his violin, phone and other personal items. Heidi Noce has organized a GoFundMe page on which she states that Nico is loved by locals and tourists alike. “How people can be so cruel is something we as a community in the North End will never understand?” asks Noce. Also supporting the cause is RUFF President, Leslie Horn whos said Nico “has become a friend to many.”
Sept. 1, 2019 Update: Through the GoFundMe page, $2,000 was raised. Heidi Noce who started the campaign wrote, “I wanted to thank you all for your donations and generosity. I have closed the fundraising campaign and am in the process of purchasing socks, a reasonably affordable used violin, a pre-paid phone, and a variety of gift cards. I will present these items to Nico once everything is delivered. I am proud to be a member of this community – it is the BEST neighborhood in the city.”