When Kea Senegal had his car stolen, he was naturally devastated.

With a wife and two children – a four-year-old and a four-month-old – he needed his vehicle to get to work at Ruffino’s on the River, a restaurant in Lafayette, LA, where he works as a dishwasher.

But just when he feared his situation may impact his ability to get to work and feed his family, help came from an unlikely source.

Last week, his colleagues – unbeknown to him – held a meeting to discuss Kea’s unfortunate situation.

After discussing how great a colleague Kea was, General Manager Chris Muffoletto asked his staff if they would be willing to pitch in to help get him a replacement vehicle.


And their response was unanimous.

Chris said: “Everyone was 100 percent onboard.

“It took three days to raise $2,500. Then, the people at a local wholesale car firm found out what we were doing and matched the funds. Their generosity was instrumental in this – they should get as much credit as anyone.”

And on Wednesday, Muffoletto and the Ruffino’s team surprised Kea with a 2015 Chevy Malibu – and his reaction was priceless.


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“It was very special to see him so surprised,” Muffoletto says.

“Kea has worked here since we opened. He is a very solid employee, well liked and just a great overall guy. It was very nice to be able to give back a little, especially during the Christmas season.”

One of the best parts of the experience, Muffoletto adds, was that it didn’t start out as a huge plan – it blew up on its own.

“It’s a great example of the staff and of the entire community,” Muffoletto explains. “We just got to it, raised money, and made it happen.”