The Full Story of Angel’s Café – Interview with Cathy Jacobs

December 24, 2021

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New Year’s Eve Special 2022: Our Year in Review

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On how it came to be called Angel’s…
“As he came around the corner of my truck, he stopped for a minute. He looked confused, and he looked up at my truck. His hands were in his pockets. His head was down. I had just left a women’s shelter a couple of years earlier and I was starting my life over and I had a restraining order against my husband for life-threatening situations. And [this man] started telling me that he was the other side of the story. His wife had a restraining order against him. He couldn’t see his children. He was a big oil executive at the time. He had lost his job because he got into drugs and alcohol and his whole life had fallen apart and he was living out of his car.
It was about two weeks later and I happened to notice this very well to do gentlemen standing at the end of the line-up. And he said, you don’t remember me? As soon as he laughed, I knew it was the same gentleman I had met weeks earlier. I was so, so excited.
I jumped down out of my truck. I ran over, I gave him a big hug and I stepped back and I said, my God, you look like a million dollars. What happened? And he said, I’ve got to tell you my story…What was incredible is when I was down here just weeks earlier, I had a loaded handgun in my pocket. That day was to be my last day. And a little angel stopped me that day and my life went on.”
On the evolution of Angel’s…
“We lost our home and we had to start over…do some pretty crazy stuff in those days. And it was kind of that, that we had as a bit of leverage to build a little building that we had, the city knew that they had kind of done a big oops on us. And I think that was part of the reason why they bought into my new vision, even though it was much bigger than the city allowed at the time. I went with a bigger dream.”
“We didn’t even have power. When we were in here in the middle of winter, October through March, we didn’t even get power hooked up. Cause there was a big battle with ENMAX. I think it was February or March before we even got power. So we were on propane heaters in the middle of winter. The plumbing was all done incorrectly. So we had to pull the plumbing out of the floor, redo it all.”
On providing meals for the poor after the lockdowns…
“So in the early part of COVID, when everything shut down, I had just gotten a huge order in, and we had all this perishable food. So the team came together and I said, what do we do, guys? We got all this. So we decided what we were going to do is put together some meals. We did 8,000 during COVID.”
On once again being on the verge of bankruptcy…
“I’ve taken the last of my savings, my personal savings, to make sure my staff’s wages are covered and our bills are paid. So we got till the end of this month. Going into January? I don’t know. It’s a day by day thing.”

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