Businesses help restaurants, workers during pandemic
PARKERSBURG — When Gov. Jim Justice announced last week that West Virginia restaurants had to close to dine-in business, Ed McDonough saw a couple of problems.
First, many of those businesses would be losing revenue. Second, most of the employees at McDonough, Eddy, Parsons & Baylous, of which McDonough is president, go out for lunch.
“We said, ‘Ok, we’re going to pick a place a day and we’re going to buy lunch for you,'” he said. “Every day we went to a different place and ordered for everyone.”
The firm’s approximately 15 employees have had lunch from Heavenly Ham, the Frosty Shop, Gyro King, Third Street Deli, Der Dog Haus and the Pizza Place over the last week, McDonough said. It helps replace some of the money the restaurants are losing without customers eating in, and it keeps workers fed efficiently.
“I’m one of those people that likes to buy local and support the economy,” said McDonough, who is also chairman of the board for Wood County Economic Development. “We’re part of Parkersburg, and they’re part of Parkersburg. And it seems to me the restaurants were most directly impacted immediately.”
Peoples Bank has its associates ordering lunch in on Tuesdays and Thursdays, said Ashley Brown, vice president regional manager.
“That’s across our entire footprint, not just here locally,” she said. “This is a way for us to stimulate the economy within our small business community.”
Since Friday, Pete’s Pizza in Mineral Wells has delivered four dozen pizzas to front-line workers who have to remain on the job in spite of stay-at-home orders, co-owner Jodi Damron said. It started with a contribution from a family member.
“They wanted 10 pizzas just sent to whoever; they were trying to help out,” Damron said.
So they delivered the pizzas to workers at the WVU Medicine Camden Clark Medical Center Emergency Department. The next day, Steve’s Plumbing in Mineral Wells bought 10 pizzas for employees of the south Parkersburg Walmart, Damron said.
After being closed on Sunday, Pete’s delivered a total of 20 pizzas to the Wood County 911 Center, the Sheriff’s Department, Parkersburg Police Department and Camden Clark Ambulance Service. They were bought by Wired Up Electrical Services owners Rodney and Nikki Worrell.
“Let’s do something for the guys that have to be out there around the people that may have this disease,” Rodney Worrell said.
Wood County 911 Director Rick Woodyard said it means a lot to receive support from the community during a difficult time for everyone.
“I think it’s outstanding,” he said. “And our people certainly appreciated it.”
Wenmoth Insurance Specialists in Parkersburg bought pizzas for the West Virginia State Police detachment and pepperoni rolls for truckers stopping at the Mineral Wells truck stop off Interstate 77 on Tuesday, Damron said. The Warehouse Church, where she’s a member, has placed “a substantial order” for hospital workers, while Pifer’s Towing ordered $500 worth for front-line workers as well.
“It helps us out by keeping my people working,” said Damron, noting Pete’s has five employees. “And it feeds people that can’t shelter during this.”
Damron said she encourages everyone to help out those in need during the pandemic, by buying them food or some other effort.
“This is our chance to be better people on the other side,” she said.
Camden Clark has also received food deliveries from establishments including the Hideout, the Original Pizza Place Marietta, Papa John’s, Cracker Barrel, Outback Steakhouse and Chik Fil A.
“Being on the front lines in health care as this COVID-19 pandemic evolves is a challenge, but the kindness of our community makes it a little easier for our team during this time,” said MarJean Kennedy, vice president, marketing, business development and strategic initiatives for the hospital. “We are so grateful for the support from area businesses and residents with their generous acts of kindness, and especially the delivery of delicious meals. In times like this, it is gratifying to be part of such a caring community.”