Monday, January 13, 2014

Sonny Geraci Benefit Concert Update

We had no Internet Service this morning so I couldn't post this when I originally intended ... but sometimes things have a way of working themselves out ...

Tonight's posting now includes new updates in this RIDICULOUS travesty ... and, by the time the news airs tonight at 10:00 in Ohio, I've got a hunch there'll be even MORE to the story!!!

re:  Now That's Just WRONG!!!:
I received this post from several musicians.  This one is from Chris Montez.  I want to pass it on to you.  I am so upset about the outcome, but I must believe that there are so many of us who are loud that 'right' will win out.
On February 14th and 15th The Gold Flashes Radio Network will be doing a 16 hour marathon benefit show for SONNY GERACI. I am going to try to right a great wrong that happened with the funds that were raised in Streetsboro, Ohio. As most of you all know by now, as of today, NONE of the money raised for SONNY GERACI has been given to his family. This was no fault of RAE, DENNIS, or THE KOCISKO FAMILY. The owner of the Z-PLEX has taken the money ... and has refused to tell or has given the total amount raised to the GERACI family. A police report has been filed against this man. So, with the help of some of the GREAT acts that preformed in Streetsboro, I will do this marathon show in order to raise monies for the Geraci family to help Sonny through this terrible time. There will be LIVE auctions of memorabilia donated by the souls who performed in Streetsboro. Donations will also be accepted. The show will begin FRIDAY, FEBRUARY 14TH at 6 pm EST, and I will be broadcasting LIVE until 10 AM EST on SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 15TH. There will be LIVE guests as well as the LIVE auctions throughout the 16 hours of the broadcast. Interested parties may contact me here on Facebook, email me at,, or call me. PLEASE HELP ME RIGHT THE WRONG!!!!!!!.
God Bless -
VERY disturbing news ... I had REALLY hoped this would have been resolved by now.
This came last night from Dennis Tufano, understandably upset (and rightfully so) ... we'll continue to keep you posted as things develop:  
Kent -
Just as the posting states, the owner of the venue refuses to release the funds he collected at his venue to the Geraci Family. After multiple emails scheduling the transfer of the funds, he only makes excuses. The case has been given to the Streetsboro Police and the TV stations are covering the situation. This guy even withdrew his donation of the cost of the venue ($5000) and took the money out of ticket sales and put it in his pocket. The lowest of the low is to steal money going to a family in need. He also on his expenses report included a charge of $900 for some horrible steam table pasta and frozen meatballs which was supposed to be for the acts. Nobody ate it but his staff. All the acts complained to us that it was not good. Two days of pasta for $900???? Hello?
So, not only did he "allegedly" embezzle the funds but he took $5900 off his donation to pocket.
I hope he spent it on prayers because he will need them.
Thanks for your concerns.
Dennis Tufano
I also talked with Bob Gaetjens, the reporter whose column we referenced last week when word of this incident went wide.  Bob said that he was not giving up on his investigation ... and expected to post an update soon. 
Just a few hours later, this article appeared in The Gateway News in Streetsboro ...
Owner ‘Chef’ Bill Thompson turns over reins of Streetsboro’s Stringz & Wingz  
Complaint regarding donations sent to prosecutor’s office
by Bob Gaetjens | Editor Published:
Stringz & Wingz Owner “Chef” Bill Thompson said he’s giving up ownership of the restaurant and entertainment venue at Streetsboro Plaza, effective Jan. 15.
Taking over as owners are current minority partners Steve Mathis and Robert Kale, as well as General Manager Kyle Kendrick, according to a Jan. 13 news release from Thompson.
Kendrick said he's "just an employee" at the facility and isn't becoming an owner.
"There's nothing that's been turned over to me," he said.
Streetsboro Family Days Founder Chuck Kocisko filed a police report Dec. 30, which alleged Thompson hadn’t yet paid to Streetsboro Family Days about $28,726 from a fundraising concert for Streetsboro Family Days regular Sonny Geraci’s family, according to Streetsboro Police Lt. Darin Powers. 
Thompson said bad publicity from the event moved him to part ways with Stringz & Wingz.
“That way, [the new owners] can salvage the business,” he said. “I’ve just been dragged through the mud.”
Geraci has been recovering for about 18 months from an aneurysm, and the funds are to be used to help defray medical costs. Powers said the case has been handed over the Portage County Prosecutor’s office.
Thompson said he plans to pay $23,860 to the Geraci family directly sometime this week via his attorneys, bypassing Streetsboro Family Days in the transaction. Thompson said he had earlier planned on donating about $4,796 in expenses that he no longer plans to donate, which accounts for the lower figure he plans to pay the family. 

A few comments to the paper criticized "the haters" who seem to forget that Bill Thompson is a family man running a struggling business and perhaps needed these funds to right things in his own world.  (WHAT?!?!?)  The guy point blank misrepresented himself, took advantage of a family that has already been grieving for a year and a half now and then reneged on not only his original promise to donate an additional $4796 but failing to meet two previously imposed deadlines to turn the money over.  Let me get this straight ... we're supposed to feel SORRY for this guy?!?!?  (kk)   

The haters? You mean the decent, non thieving people of Streetsboro that are angry their donations didn't go where they were supposed to, putting a dark spot on that town?  He out right stole ... I'm sorry, borrowed ... the money to get himself out of a jam, thinking he could make it back up with his next big venue. The problem with that is he can't control his mouth or his temper on social media so he's lost a lot of customers. He let his "mini me" Kyle run the place and let's be honest, he's not very personable. The food was great when chef Bill made it, otherwise it was cold.
The truth to this whole situation is Chef Bill kept money that didn't being to him. Pay pal, paperwork, counting money ... all excuses, especially when all the money wasn't accounted for at least two weeks after the event.  
The excuses need to stop. He is being sued by his former landlord and has been in trouble for bad checks. Eventually greed catches up with you and you pay the price. The people of Streetsboro are not stupid and are no longer buying the excuses.
get real 6789  

Hi Kent, 
I have heard that Streetsboro Family Days has given over their part of the fundraising money to Sonny. I can't confirm that and I don't know the amount, maybe you can find out??
As of today, January 13, no money has been given to Sonny's family from Stringz & Wingz. I know it's upwards of $24,000. A police report has been filed and charges are pending with the Portage County Prosecutor's Office.
I also know that all three major TV stations are at Stringz & Wingz right now as I type this so I'm sure there will be something on the news tonight.
I also heard that Streetsboro Family Days plans to donate their start up money for their annual festival to Sonny to try and right this wrong. I don't know how accurate that is either. Maybe someone else can verify.
It'll be interesting to see if there are any new developments after this story runs on the news tonight.  But for right now, people are pissed!!!  I know several FH readers made donations to this cause out of the kindness of their hearts to help one of our fallen idols ... and this clown has absolutely NO rights to this money ... he didn't do ANYTHING!!!  Stay tuned ... I'm sure there's more to come!  (kk)