Post # 1
My caterer died late last week (less than 3 days ago). We decided to go with a small family run company because of the quality of the food, and the general good vibe we got from our caterer. I love that we are supporting a small family run company, particularly one that is incredibly involved in the community. We found out yesterday (via an obituary a family member posted on my facebook.. thanks) that our caterer died, suddenly. I am heartbroken for his children and family. According to the obituary money is extremely tight for the family right now, but they will be honoring all catering contracts. I know that his “second in-charge” was his 18 year old daughter, and from articles I have found it looks like she will be running the catering business now. I plan on making a donation to his memorial fund, but that doesn’t negate the fact that there are certain questions I need answered.
So, my question is, how long should I wait before contacting them? A week, two weeks? Keep in mind our wedding is in 5 weeks. I plan on continuing my contract with them, but I would like to know how they are handling their catering contracts, in terms of logistics, prep, food etc. Our wedding is farther away than their usual catering jobs, and I worry that the logistics may be too much for a greiving 18-year old woman. If she feels it is too much we could look into finding someone else, but I really want to give her a chance and continue to support the family. So yeah, how long should I wait, and how do I tactfully ask these logistical questions?
Post # 3
I’m so sorry to hear this! What a terrible thing to happen to his family.
It’s a tricky situation, and I had to think about this one for a minute. I would call/send a card to offer condolences before even bringing up the wedding. That first phone call, the family might say something like ‘don’t worry, everything will be fine on your wedding day,’ and I might return with ‘this isn’t about me right now. I just want to make sure there isn’t anything I can do.’
If they’re honoring contracts, they’re honoring contracts. I wouldn’t wait until two weeks before the wedding before bringing it up… maybe call a backup caterer in the meantime? Is that a possibility?
Post # 4
My guess is that the new manager of the business (the daughter) will be really eager to do a good job with the existing catering contracts, both to honor her father’s legacy and to ensure that she can continue supporting the family.
I’d bet that they’ll send out an email or somehing to all the clients who currently have contracts, letting you know what’s going on and assuring you that all will be taken care of, etc. If I were you, I’d wait 2 weeks, and if you haven’t heard anything by then, only then would I contact them.
Post # 5
Even though the 18-year old will perhaps be in charge, I doubt she will be doing it all by herself. I would suggest calling sooner if they hadn’t expressed that they would be honoring all contracts, but being that they have let customers know that, I would wait perhaps 2 weeks from the date of the obituary if they haven’t contacted you in the meantime. What a tough situation!