Text from Interview with the Dolphys
Sadie: He was always happy, and he was always helping someone else, that's what they would always say to me. You know, that even though he didn't have too much money he would be always taking something to somebody else, or helping some musician if he thought they were out of work or something. I know that in the early years, when he was here at home, there were times that he'd say that he had a job. And then, he would be at home. I'd say, "I thought you had a job." "Well, something happened or something." Well, after he died, musicians came to tell us that when they came to town and he found out they had a family, that he would give them his job. Even take them to the job sometimes, because he always had a car*. And he'd tell them, "Well you have a family and kids. I live at home, I can always eat."
* Note that Eric Dolphy Sr. was in the automotive business.