DERBY - Few people can turn down a heaping plate of homemade spaghetti, but about 270 people who had their fill of this Italian dish at Brenda’s Home Style Cookn’ in Derby Jan. 22 had the benefit of knowing they were eating not only to fill their stomachs, but for a good cause.
The proceeds from a special fundraising spaghetti dinner and a raffle went to Danielle (Bathalon) Wright of Coventry. Danielle is battling Non-Hodgkin's Lymphoma. The money raised will help pay for expenses related to her cancer treatment that are not covered by her insurance. Her medical treatment prevented Danielle, a mother of two, from attending the fundraiser, but she made it clear she was there in spirit.
“It’s unbelievable,” Danielle said in a phone interview. “Donald (Danielle’s husband) and I were overwhelmed with emotions. We couldn't believe how many people attended the dinner between friends, family, and people we don't even know. We are proud to be part of a community where everyone looks out for each other and ‘steps up to the plate’ in a time of need. We are very blessed and our thanks go out to everyone that helped, whether it be donating raffle items, money, or time in the kitchen and out in the dining room. My family would like to especially extend a special thank you to everyone at LandVest, Inc. and Community National Bank."
The event was hosted by Rhonda Patenaude, the owner of the restaurant and a co-worker of Danielle’s at LandVest in Derby. It was organized by Danielle’s longtime friend and co-worker at LandVest, Tiffany McCormick of Barton. Customers paid $10 for their meal.
“I am still sitting here in awe at how generous and kind this community is,” Tiffany said. “We had people who paid to eat and handed over extra dollars. Local businesses and people donated fantastic raffles and people were lining up to purchase the raffle tickets. At one point Rhonda said she didn't know where the food line ended and the raffle line started because we had an amazing turn out.”