Crowdtilt Fundraising goes nuts for Boston boat owner Dave Henneberry

I’m thinking that Dave Henneberry, the Boston-area man who found one of the alleged Boston marathon bombers in his yard, is going to get a new boat.

A social-media fueled drive to raise enough cash to repair Henneberry’s bullet-riddled vessel actually ended up raising a boatload of money in a very short time. The campaign on San Francisco-based Crowdtilt raised so much money, in fact, that the man who started it has upped the $2,800 goal to $50,000 — enough to buy Henneberry a replacement for what was reportedly a 22-foot Seahawk cruiser that police shot up while capturing 19-year-old Dzhokhar Tsarnaev.

“Hey everyone! I can’t believe that we’ve crossed $6000,” Craig Dunlap of Texas wrote on his Crowdtilt page. “This is such an amazing outpouring of support for David. I’m so proud to be a part of it with y’all!”

The campaign, which went up on Saturday, was nearing $7,000 by Monday afternoon.

Marek Zareba, Crowdtilt’s head of growth, said Dunlap initially started pooling money among his friends.

“They started spreading it through their own networks,” Zareba said. “Overnight, just through Facebook, this campaign just kind of took on a life of its own. Email, newspapers. It’s skyrocketing from here. The initial goal of repairing the boat has now become replacing it.”

Dunlap said in his fundraising message that Henneberry, who late Friday pulled back the tarp on his boat after seeing blood and found Tsarnaev, is “a modern American hero.”

He’s not the only person who wants to help Henneberry. There is a growing Dave’s New Boat Facebook group here. As of Monday afternoon 189 people had contributed to the boat project on Crowdtilt and a number of other efforts were underway.

As for Dunlap, Zareba says he’s been a little overwhelmed by the attention that his fundraising effort has drawn. I sent him an e-mail asking if he had the time to talk to me. I haven’t heard back.

Mike Cassidy Mike Cassidy (173 Posts)

I write about the culture of Silicon Valley for the San Jose Mercury News.