Local News

Knightdale Restaurant Helps Family After Fire

Posted December 24, 2007
Updated December 25, 2007

— A family of nine who lost nearly everything in a house fire last month will have a Christmas, thanks to a restaurant that came to their aid.

The fire left DeLisa Parrilla, her fiancé and their seven children homeless. An Applebee’s in Knightdale heard about the family's tragedy and decided to adopt them for Christmas.

“We were all upset. We started crying,” said Applebee’s Manager Keith Brozzoski.

The response was overwhelming. The restaurant collected about $2,000 worth of gift cards and cash and toys and clothing. One person even donated a house rent-free for six months.

“We had to go place to place, hotel to hotel, and to have someone reach out to you, it’s just amazing,” Parrilla said. “I’m just excited and happy and thankful.”

The fire at the family’s home started in the fireplace and moved up the wall into the attic. Nearly everything was lost. The family has already started repairs, but it will be awhile before they can move back into the home.


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  • WooHoo2You Dec 25, 2007

    hondaman, I am sure if she was married with only one child, going to your church, voting for the same candidates you do THEN she would be worthy of assistance. (Or maybe God would not have punished her for such a wicked lifestyle.)

  • ghimmy47 Dec 25, 2007

    A Christian doesn't ask for a bloodline, pedigree or history before helping 7 children and parents in need they did not cause.

  • superman Dec 25, 2007

    She is not married and has 7 children? And some of you want to help her. I suggest she go to the nearest drug store. Maybe she can find out how to prevent 9 more children from showing up at her door. Sorry she is homeless but she doesnt seem like a good person to help. She doesnt even know how to help herself.

  • Polar-Bear Dec 25, 2007

    This story just shows that the spirit of giving and charity at home are still alive in this country. Applebee's, their management and employees all earn kudos for their participation and generosity. Keep up the good work and may others be blessed by your selflessness and kindness.

  • ranquick Dec 25, 2007

    Stories like this is what we need more of in the News, this brings tears in one's eyes and it is the MOST WONDEFUL THING to help those in time of need.

  • Nana Dec 25, 2007

    Ditto what Little Sister wrote

    God Bless you all and Merry Christmas.

  • ghimmy47 Dec 25, 2007

    Applebee's just earned 5 stars in my opinion. Americans like these are what makes America great. Notice the family didn't break into the restaurant and demand anything? Yes ... I'm making a point.

  • parr4246 Dec 24, 2007

    This is a wonderful story.......!!!

  • wonbyone74 Dec 24, 2007

    CATCH 22....i totally agree with you,... i worked at a christian bookstore and offered a very young guy a job just to come do odds and ends...but he was just too lazy and didnt want to work!! stories like this that are legit are the ones that i want to help!!

  • catch22 Dec 24, 2007

    these people need handouts, not the "lazy homeless"