Dear Family, Friends, Casual Acquaintances, New Friends, Restaurant Habitués and Other Lost Souls:
Richard Mazzera is a Berkeley-bred restauranteur with a dry wit, an infectious sense of humor, and a talent for making people feel good. It's as if Bill Murray and Robin Williams morphed to become the maitre d' in a very fun restaurant. He has not a mean bone in his body and he has a knack for making you laugh when it's appropriate and more often when it's not.
As many of you know by now, and for those of you who don't, Richard is a survivor of bladder cancer. True to his nature, he dealt with his ordeal with self-deprecating sense of humor in the face of a terrifying and often painful situation. After several years of being in remission during which he worked his ass off opening yet another successful restaurant, Richard's curse has come back in the form of Stage 4 cancer in the lymph nodes and other parts of his urinary tract. Officially, metastatic to lymph node, intra abdominal and transitional cell carcinoma, right ureter. With that cheery bit of news from his oncologist, compounded by the threat of potential kidney failure, Richard is clearly fighting for his life.
He has begun his "full-on" aggressive chemotherapy as of January 15. The treatment and subsequent surgery, and recovery will last several months requiring every bit of his signature humor, as well as most of his money, to win this battle. A win for Richard will be a win for all of us.
His lovely wife Terumi is working long hours as a Manager at Trailblazer Tavern in SF while using the rest of her very limited waking hours to help Richard deal with the physical and mental aftershock of chemotherapy. With Richard not able to work, and with medical bills mounting, they have drifted into the dreaded zone of acute financial distress.
These are good, decent, hard working people who deserve a break and need a little financial support from all of us. A little or a lot, does not matter. What matters most is that you care enough to give something. We believe that world as we know it is a better place with Richard in it. Please help him get through this ordeal and regain his health.
Unlike Richard's usual good-natured banter, this situation is no joke.