Weatherford Community Raises $19,000 to Reopen Popular Restaurant After Tragedy

After a family was hit with tragedy, people who cared the most made sure they didn't suffer alone.

The Weatherford community has rallied around a family in need.

Jeanine Grizzard and her husband’s family have owned The Pizza Place since 1976. It’s a restaurant sports teams grab post-game meals, teens use as a meeting spot and just an overall community staple.

Tragically, Jeanine, her husband Roger, who had been a teacher at Weatherford High School, and their son were involved in a car accident just a few months ago. [[557844621,C]]

"Roger was killed instantly," Jeanine said. "My son, who was in the back seat, suffered a traumatic brain injury and suffered broken spine vertebrae."

Immediately following the accident, the restaurant was closed for a while. Jeanine left to figure a lot of the day-to-day out on her own.

Once they re-opened, the double oven went out. When that happened, Jeanine was forced to close the restaurant again without enough money to replace them.

"The ovens were original to the building. We had pack-worked them and pieced them together many times and they finally just quit," Jeanine said.

That’s when the community stepped up, hoping to change the course of such a tragic situation. [[557844661,C]]

A former employee started a GoFundMe page in hopes of raising enough money to purchase new ovens. In less than a month, the crowdfunding campaign raised nearly $20,000 -- more than enough to replace the ovens and re-open the doors of a place so many called home. 

"It’s overwhelming because I don’t even recognize some of the names of the donors many were anonymous," Jeanine said.

Jeanine said the real reward is seeing the lasting impact her family, specifically her husband, made on the community he loved so much. [[557845681,C]]

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