Lake Park Diner in Naples donates food to front-line workers

Reporter: Gina Tomlinson Writer: Drew Hill
Published: Updated:
Credit: WINK News.

NCH health care workers have been working hard, especially with the recent spike in coronavirus cases. On Sunday, Florida saw a record of 15,000 cases.

To help them out, one restaurant in Naples wanted to do their part by providing meals to front-line workers.

“They’ve got to deal with so much stress and pain from people who come in the hospital, so anything we can do to ease that pain or stress we can do,” said Russell Skall, Fleming’s corporate executive chef who is also a chef at Lake Park Diner in Naples.

Lake Park decided to package 100 healthy meals for doctors and nurses in the COVID unit every day until Friday to make sure that they don’t go hungry.

The staff right now is a little weary. There’s a little bit of fatigue, but when they know the community is still behind them it really elevates their mood,” said NCH President and CEO Paul Hiltz.

At the start of the coronavirus pandemic, NCH saw lots of support and donations from the community, but it has slowed down in the past two months.

”Surprises me, yes,” Jolene Dunbar, a Naples resident, said.

She thinks that because the state started opening up, people were more concerned about getting back to normal life than assisting front line workers.

“We’re out here eating with no masks on. It’s still a guessing game,” Dunbar reiterated.

“It’s hard,” said Skall. “People’s lives right now are upside-down.”

While it has been hard for everyone, the people of Naples just want to support their front-line workers and first responders. They are providing pizza and donuts for Naples Police and lunch for NCH health care staff and firefighters.

“Any crisis, everybody just jumps in,” Skall added.

The first responders and front-line workers greatly appreciate it and the community is happy to help.

“I think it’s wonderful. Anything that anyone can do in the community is well thought of,” Dunbar said.

“This is a very generous community and they’ve shown it and continued to show it, so we’re very grateful,” Hiltz said.


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