An Ola Fundraiser For Brent
Wednesday - January 24, 2007
Fred and Cheryl DeAngelo
If you work in the restaurant industry, then you know the meaning of family. Sure, you serve families and you help celebrate family holidays, but when you sign on for your shift, servers, busboys, owners, chefs and managers become family in this high-strung, often stressful business. And when family members need help there’s no one better to turn to than aunties and uncles and cousins. If you’re in Hawaii and in the food and beverage business, you have thousands of them.
Fred and Cheryl DeAngelo are calling on a few of those extended family members, and residents of the North Shore are in for a culinary treat.
On Thanksgiving night, Brent Wloczewski-Price, a cook at Ola at Turtle Bay, lost control of his car as he was driving home from work. The 20-year-old was seriously injured and lay in a coma for more than a month.
“Brent had only been with us for a few months,” says Fred, “but already he had become a significant part of our family. He had a big impact on our team.”
Fred and Cheryl are strongly committed to family. They have a son, Dylan (by Fred’s first marriage), and the newest addition to their family is due in March, and they consider the members of their team at Ola to be an integral part of everything they do.
When they first saw the beach-front Ola almost two years ago, with its ironwood trees, glass walls and ocean roaring just a few feet away, Fred says that they immediately felt connected to the restaurant - and to the land. And as soon as they began building and hiring their team, it seemed like everyone shared the same commitment.
“Ola was always about a vision we had of treating people as if they were guests in our home, and of encouraging them to enjoy the beauty of Hawaii,” says Fred. “All of us believe in that vision, but it’s because of our team that we’ve succeeded. The feeling goes right through our team, and that’s what has made our first year so successful.”
When it became apparent that Brent’s medical bills were skyrocketing, Fred and Cheryl started to ask for help in organizing a fundraiser.
Colin Nishida of Side Street Inn and Fort Street Bar & Grill, whose own employees have recently undergone some serious medical problems, responded in typical style.
“We have to take care of our own,” he says.
The result is a benefit that should have the North Shore rocking with incredibly good food and music. Russell Siu of 3660 on the Rise, Nishida, Eric Leterc of The Pacific Club, Kyung Botticello of Naupaka Caterers, Hector Morales of Turtle Bay Resort, James Davidson of Signature Sweets and Ryan Lum of North Shore Cattle Company all will be dishing up some spectacular food. Southern Wines and Spirits and Johnson Brothers will be on site pouring fine wines and other beverages. Music is by John Cruz.
“It’s going to be a great night,” says Fred.
The future looks bright for Brent. He’s out of his comatose state and in a neurological rehabilitation center in California, where, Fred says, “every day is just getting better and better for him.”
The Ola Fundraiser for Brent is Jan. 30 from 6 to 9 p.m. Tickets are $75 per person. For more information, visit www.olaislife.com or call 637-2134.
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