ALTON — Life can be going along, just as it has been for weeks, months, years.
Coffee in the morning, long work days, time with friends, family memories. It’s easy to settle into a routine — until the unexpected happens.
For Richard Munsterman, the date of that unexpected event was April 27.
“He was on his way here to work about 3 p.m. when I got a call from him, saying he had to go right back home as his house was on fire,” Angelo Boukas, owner of Jimmy the Greek’s, said. “We covered his shift. He went back and when he saw what had happened, he was devastated.”
Munsterman, originally from Jerseyville, had been renting a house in Edwardsville. The fire gutted the
home, destroying everything he owned.
“(I think the worst part has been) the slow rebuilding process and the overwhelming destructive power of the fire,” he said.
“For the next week he was in total disarray,” Boukas added. “I felt so bad for him. He takes pride in his appearance, and he had over 200 ties. He likes to look professional at all times; I don’t know if he even owns a pair of jeans.”
With no renter’s insurance, Munsterman found himself without everyday essentials. Friends pitched in, helping with a few clothes and offering their couches for a place to stay. The Red Cross provided some toiletries.
But those are Band-Aids. To help with long-term costs and to help him get his life back, Boukas is hosting a fundraiser on May 28 at his restaurant at 1856 E. Broadway.
“This just felt like the right thing to do,” Boukas said. “My employees are like family to me; they always have been.”
Beginning at 1 p.m. and running throughout the evening, Jimmy the Greek’s will have barbecue menu items, a beer tent, and live music from Mars Needs Guitars and another act to be announced. Pint glasses will be sold for $2, with one dollar from every sale going to the cause.
Admission is free; donations will be accepted at the bar.
“Here is a young kid, just starting out, and within minutes everything he has is completely gone,” Boukas said. “He is a great guy who always wants to help other people. Just recently, there was someone in need and Richard bent over backward to give him money, clothes and the help he needed.
“This is a chance for the community to come together and help someone in need, and have a great time doing so.”
For more information, call (618) 462-6600.
Follow @NewsAdVantage on Twitter