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stay away from me you pervert
Posted on 2009.04.01 at 17:10

Back on his feet, feeding those who aren't

STAFF PHOTO / CHIP LITHERLAND
 
Walter Rusin was nearly homeless before turning his life around and opening Janina's BBQ in Sarasota.
 

By Anthony Cormier

 
Published: Tuesday, November 25, 2008 at 1:00 a.m.
Last Modified: Tuesday, November 25, 2008 at 4:54 p.m.

SARASOTA - Walter Rusin is not getting rich selling $3.25 hamburgers at Janina's BBQ, not in this economy.

 
DINNER FEEDS 250

Restaurant owner Walter Rusin served up Thanksgiving Dinner this morning to
about 250 people at the Resurrection House day shelter for the homeless in
downtown Sarasota.

In 2001, the Resurrection House helped Rusin and his family with money the
charity received through the annual Season of Sharing campaign that helps
families in need. Rusin’s family was homeless for a short time, and needed
help paying bills.

Today, Rusin owns Janina’s BBQ at 3430 N. Tamiami Trail.

 
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But he is certainly better off than he was five years ago, when he was jobless, nearly homeless, flat broke and worried sick. In those days, after he got laid off and evicted, Walter moved with his wife and daughter into a motel on North Tamiami Trail.

The thing that hurt most was wondering how in the world he would feed them all in the morning.

He has not forgotten that feeling, which is the reason why the burgers at his restaurant are cheap, and why he puts a homeless man to work holding a sign out front of Janina's, and why he will cook a huge Thanksgiving dinner today for 300 homeless people at Resurrection House.

"Look, I'm like everybody else counting my pennies," he says. "But when you've been there, when you know what it feels like to wonder if you can feed your children, you have to do something."

Today's dinner at the Resurrection House will set Rusin back $600. There will be turkey, stuffing, gravy, bread, pie. The works. When he first approached the shelter about cooking dinner, he figured there would be 150 people or so.

The number quickly jumped to 200, then 250.

The need, says Resurrection House's Bill Wilson, is as great as ever. Several years ago, when Rusin was out of work, Resurrection House helped him get back on his feet. With the dinner, Rusin is trying to pay it back.

"When people succeed, we rarely ever see them come back. That's what makes Walter so unique," Wilson said.

Getting knocked down was not new in the Rusin family.

Nor was it all that surprising that Rusin got back up.

Rusin's family is from Poland, and he was the first to be born in America. His grandfather, a farmer, was killed by the Nazis after he refused to hand over all his livestock.

He was raised in New York, where his father worked at Stumer's bakery.

A few years back, Rusin moved with his wife to Fort Myers. He got a job with a janitorial company and worked his way up to supervisor, which was a big deal because the company seemed to have big plans.

Then the company lost its contract with a major business. They were laying people off. Already living paycheck to paycheck, Rusin could not afford his rent, his electricity bill, even his car registration.

The family moved to a motel. The money ran out.

His daughter, Samantha, remembers being embarrassed and telling white lies to her friends at school.

"I would be like, 'No I can't come over today,'" Samantha recalls. "You don't want people to see you like that."

One day, someone recommended the Resurrection House.

It was the not first time the charity group footed a motel bill or a utility bill payment. The group put the Rusins up for three weeks, long enough for him to find a job at a fast food restaurant in Bradenton.

He had a car, but could not afford the registration.

So he walked until his shoes wore through. Then he put cardboard in the bottom.

Rusin worked his way up to manager.

He took side jobs on the weekends, or at night, or whenever he could land one: Carpet washer. Window cleaner. Plumber. Landscaper.

Three months ago, he saved enough to open Janina's, in a strip plaza on North Tamiami Trail, right up the street from the Day's Inn where his family slept when he was penniless.

The restaurant is right next to a liquor store and a Kwik-Mart. When he first moved in, he had to clean up needles and condoms along the front stoop. But the food is cheap and word is slowly getting out.

And he hardly ever turns anyone away.

On occasion, the Resurrection House will send over a family living in one of the nearby motels for a hot meal late at night.

Or a woman comes by looking gaunt and sickly and Rusin, knowing full well what it is like to go hungry, will give her an order of french fries.

Or he will put together a feast for 300 people down on their luck, just like he was.

"Because I know what it feels like."


oh snap

owwwwww

Posted on 2009.03.17 at 12:51

So working in two jobs the involves me talking to people but not any kind of people old and dum ass people the hurts your brain. Its magical people that you have to worry, lets say you have seven people at your table and you ask them “what would you like with it mash, fries, rice or ex vegs” ok that’s easy thing to answer. right? Right?!?!!? Noooooooo its not they always come back with saying “What was that again” so you say it again “ can I get a bake potato”. why would anybody do that to you and to make it worst is that the six other people you haven’t ask yet will do that to you each fucking time and you don’t understand why. All day I repeat and repeat at the end of the day I’m pissed as hell I hate dum and old people. The best people in the world are the cheap ones and I understand saving money not going over your limit oh I completing understand that but I’m talking about the ones that find every other way to fuck your tip because you will get pissed of because I have. Here I have a table of two old women at a table (its funny that when you get a couple a man and a woman their find no problems no nothing just happy as pie but!!! When you get women together its fucking hell I never seen anything like it oh anyway) ok they both get two cups a soup and both get each a small house salad only because they wouldn’t have to pay for the cear (its more money) and then they ask for bread are bread is awesome but the only thing about it only comes with meals it’s a $1.50 they got pissed off because I charge them for the bread oh my god I never seen anybody get pissed for paying for something that you are eating holy shit I should get pissed for wasting my life where people tip you $15 on $251.03. Oh hell yeah happen to me. I’m really good with my tables I’m nice I making really good money but its really hard going to work knowing that your going to have these people for 8 hours and me alone take care of 49 people a night A NIGHT OH MY GOD……… 49 old/dum people I talk to a night my brain hurts a lot.


Do you believe in true love? What about love at first sight?
yea I believe in it I saw this guy I work with and we both fell inlove in first sight we been together for four years and both every happy

stay away from me you pervert

yayness

Posted on 2009.02.15 at 10:11
yay got a new cell phone its a samsung tought screen its sweet

whoohooo

yayness

Posted on 2009.01.14 at 08:55
This is the good shit: love story
wow its been like forever well I'm doing great lost 68 pounds. I have my own resturent now its call Janina's BBQ and its cheap for everyone so yeah I'm doing good love life kida of sucks I'm stuck in a spot that I cant get out but thats my own fault meh
cuz of him I lost most of my friends and I feel so alone now. I just want to say sorry to the of my friend that it seem that uhh dunno how to put OH! i just suck sorry guys no matter what most of my friends think me I still care and wish you lots of happness oxoxoxoxox and I mean it!


but I been working my ass off working two job and no time for me ahhhhhhhhhhh I'm sick of working soooo much but if you want to stop by at janina's ill be here

3430 north tamiami trail sarasota fl 34234

yayness!!!


oh snap

omg

Posted on 2008.02.18 at 01:48
I'm still alive 

im doing so so a bit mad but ok  i hate my job i hate my boyfriend so yea =/
im moving to orlando in august yay!!!!!!!!!

whoohooo
Posted on 2007.05.10 at 12:42
hiya!

well I'm moving out, I got my own place and starting out new and very happy ^_^

well I'm doing great , I have been working out I lost like about 20 pounds sweet!!!!

still working at the same place -.-

stay away from me you pervert
Posted on 2007.02.14 at 13:11
Happy heart day <3

stay away from me you pervert

heeeey

Posted on 2007.01.10 at 08:21
I'm still alive, just work sooo much =/
I'm doing well.
not much to talk about really, just been sick alot.
fighting with my roommate cuz like he's late on rent and then he eats my food that I payed for -.- fat ass.......

whoohooo
Posted on 2006.08.22 at 12:10
hiya everyone
I'm doing great
nothing really new just working alot thats about it =/


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