Helping in Times of a Tragedy

August 23, 2009

Ashley Ramos-HernandezOn Wednesday, August 19, six-year old Ashley Ramos-Hernandez finished a day of school, got off the bus, and then tragedy ensued.  She was hit by a vehicle where the driver failed to see the school bus lights or gates, killing young Ashley.  This incident sent a chill through every parent in the Triangle, and our hearts poured out to Ashley’s family.  The food community is pouring out even more.

Ashley’s parents are employees of Urban Food Group, working at both Vivace and Coquette.  And on Saturday, August 29, the servers, bartenders and staff of both restaurants will be donating 100% of their tips to Ashley’s parents, Alfonso and Elena, to help defray the costs they are encountering.  It’s horrific to lose a child in such a tragic accident, but then having to deal with the medical and funeral expenses makes it even worse.

So if you are looking for a place to dine next Saturday, consider going to Vivace and Coquette.  While you’re there, please tip a little more than usual, knowing that you’re helping to ease a family’s pain.

Even more, I challenge other restaurants and their staffs in the Triangle to help this family in similar ways.   The restaurant worker community is pretty tight-knit, and I know how quickly they can mobilize to help each other in times of trouble.  If you own a restaurant or just work in one, think of how you can help Alfonso and Elena with these financial burdens.  Or just do it in memory of Ashley.

EDIT:  I received the following email from Urban Food Group this morning:

The Urban Food Group family is greatly saddened by the tragic death of 6 year old Ashley Ramos-Hernandez, who was killed in a school bus crossing accident in Raleigh this week.

Ashley’s parents, Alfonzo and Elena, along with several other family members, have been long-time employees of Urban Food Group’s restaurants, and we have enjoyed having them as a part of our team, our community, and our family for many years. We share in their grief, and we offer our support.

On Saturday night, August 29th, all of Urban Food Group, owners and staff, will be donating their time and money to assist Ashley’s family.

-At Vivace and Coquette Brasserie, where Ashley’s parents are employed, the service staff has volunteered to donate 100% of their tips and wages from the entire day to the family. Both restaurants will be open from 11:00 a.m. until 11:00 p.m.

-The service staff at Porter’s City Tavern and Frazier’s Bistro will be donating portions- and in some cases, all- of their tips and wages from the evening’s dinner service as well. Porter’s will be open from 5:00 p.m. until 11:00 p.m., and Frazier’s from 5:00 p.m. until 10:30 p.m..

-Urban Food Group’s owners and management team have been, and will continue to support the Ramos and Hernandez family in their time of need.

If you would like to help, you can do so by simply by visiting any of our restaurants next Saturday.

If you would like to do more, or cannot make it out that night and would still like to make a contribution, simply call or stop by any of our restaurants and ask to speak to the manager. We will be happy to make arrangements for you.

We would like to thank you for your continued support, your patronage, and your assistance in helping Ashley’s family cope with this tragic loss.


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