Staff rallies behind Leland business owner who lost everything in house fire


LELAND, NC (WWAY) — What goes around comes around. For a Leland business owner, he is in shock at how the community is rallying behind him.

P.T.’s Grille owner Aaron Hyatt lost just about everything when his house burned down Sunday, including his pet dogs and cats.

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The staff at P.T.’s says they are just trying to give back to the man who has given so much. They say he is one of the most humble people, but they insisted on doing something.

Staff at P.T.’s Grille in Leland is raising money for the owner. (Photo: Kylie Jones/WWAY)

“I didn’t even know that I knew so many people that have reached out to me,” Hyatt said. “It’s been very humbling.”

Now, his staff wants to give back to the person they say gives so much.

“It’s a time for the community to come together and that’s what he’s always said to us, ‘We’re a community, and that’s what we do when something bad happens. We come together.’ So I feel that same way,” Manager Sabra Child said. “We’ll come together for you just as well as you get everybody to come together for other people, you know.”

Child says Hyatt has given to countless people in the community.

He regularly hosts benefit night’s at P.T.’s, where a school gets a portion of all the restaurant’s sales for the evening. When he learned about Madison Williams, a 4-year-old Leland girl diagnosed with a rare form of brain cancer last year, Hyatt organized a fundraiser at P.T.’s and got other area restaurants involved so the community had a bigger opportunity to help. The night raised about $8,000. He later helped organize a golf tournament to help the family. Hyatt, who has a young daughter, said he was moved by Madison’s story to want to help. He met her this spring just weeks before she died. And when friends and family organized a celebration of Madison’s life, Hyatt donated more food for guests.┬áIn the wake of Hurricane Florence, when his business was closed and not making money, Hyatt fired up his kitchen and fed first responders and even our own WWAY team across the street.

These are just some reasons why Child says they are holding an ongoing fundraiser at the restaurant.

Hyatt says he is overwhelmed by generosity.

“I can’t even begin to thank everybody,” Hyatt said. “It’s probably the only thing that’s keeping me going right now. Immediately, my daughter and I had all the help we could imagine.”

The staff at P.T.’s will be collecting donations, from clothing to household items to money, for Hyatt and his daughter all day Friday.

They also started a GoFundMe, visit here if you would like to donate.