Tech billionaire gives hermit $250,000 after shack burns down

A billionaire software company CEO has given a former hermit in New Hampshire $250,000 to rebuild his cabin in a new location.

Alexander Karp, CEO of Palantir Technologies, gave David Lidstone a personal cheque last week, Mr Lidstone’s friend, Jodie Gedeon said on Facebook.

A spokesperson for the data analytics software company confirmed the donation to the Concord Monitor.

READ MORE: Off-grid hermit known as 'River Dave' forced back into society

David Lidstone, 81, lived in a shack by himself for 30 years before being arrested for squatting.

“How can I express myself and my gratitude towards something like that? I start to tear up whenever I think about it,” Mr Lidstone told the Monitor.

“For an old logger who always had to work, for anyone to give you that type of money, it’s incredibly difficult for me to get my head around.”

There has been an outpouring of support for Mr Lidstone since he was jailed July 15 and accused of squatting for nearly 30 years on property owned by a Vermont man.

His cabin burned down this month shortly before his release, but he recently secured temporary housing through the winter.

READ MORE: Hermit says self-isolation is the ultimate journey

The shack David Lidstone built for himself in the New Hampshire wilderness.

The location is being kept secret to protect Mr Lidstone’s privacy, Ms Gedeon said.

But supporters will have a chance to meet Mr Lidstone at a “thank you” event in Warner, New Hampshire, on Saturday.

Lidstone, for his part, said he doesn't think he can go back to being a hermit.

“Maybe the things I’ve been trying to avoid are the things that I really need in life," he told The Associated Press.

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David Lidstone, an off-the-grid New Hampshire hermit known to locals as 'River Dave', did not believe he was living on private land.

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