It’s been seven months since Sheila Modglin was severely injured in a car accident. Friends of the longtime Dirty Frank’s bartender and founder of Upper Darby’s Sunshine Arts community center have come up with a new way to help:
They’re putting together a monthlong October fundraiser called “Dining Out for Sheila” — and are actively looking for restaurants to join to effort.
It was February when Modglin, 56, was struck by a car on Lincoln Drive. She was on her way back from the Eagles victory parade to the Mount Airy home where she was dog sitting. Lincoln Drive is among Philly’s most dangerous roads. Its high fatality rate has earned it the nickname “Dead Man’s Gulch.” In 2014, one intersection had the fifth-most car crashes in the city. The drive is notoriously unfriendly to pedestrians.
Modglin survived the crash, but her injuries were extensive: severe brain trauma along with injuries to her pelvis and her legs. In the company of friends and family, she’s been in various hospitals and rehab centers since the accident. Her recovery has sometimes been frustratingly slow, according to her brother Rick, who is overseeing her care.
But it’s made even harder due to her lack of health insurance — a pervasive issue for workers in the hospitality industry.
So friends and family are asking for help. Modglin’s loved ones plan to spend the entire month of October fundraising for her medical costs, in partnership with local restaurants.
Here’s how it works: Philly food spots can sign up online for at least one night. During that evening restaurant will commit to donating a portion of its profits to Modglin’s recovery, and display her portrait alongside a donation box.
Dubbed “Dining Out for Sheila,” the fundraiser has already scheduled a few events. Starting Oct. 2, Stogie Joe’s Tavern will raise money on East Passyunk Avenue. Also committed are Grace Tavern for Oct. 20 and The Black Cat Tavern for the following day.
In the middle of the month, Modglin’s own Dirty Frank’s will launch an art sale to benefit her recovery.
“Now is the time we need to come together,” reads the event website, “because she is in need of our help.”
If you’re a restaurant owner looking to get involved, all you have to do is fill out a form, then turn it in via email or in person at Dirty Frank’s. If you don’t own a restaurant and you still want to help, just plan to dine out at a participating location.