Communities rally behind wounded Arnold police officer with ‘dine out’ event

VALLEY PARK, Mo. - Eating out for a good cause. On Wednesday, dozens of St. Louis area restaurants were throwing their support behind injured Arnold police Officer Ryan O’Connor by donating a portion of their sales.

“Ryan has a long road ahead of him with his medical bills,” said Kirk Syberg, owner of several participating Syberg Family Restaurants. “So this is just a little part of what we can do to help pay some of those bills for him.”

“The police have our back, and I think this is our small way of showing him that we appreciate what they do for us.”

Each participating restaurant donated 10 to 20 percent of its ‘Dine Out’ event sales to assist the officer.

Those who know O’Connor or are even remotely acquainted with him said the need to step up and show that they care was apparent all around the restaurant community.

“We’re not brothers and sisters by blood but we are all a community in St. Louis, in St. Charles, and we all have to look out for each other,” said Kyle Dent, owner of Shamrocks Pub and Grill.

The Axe House in Valley Park, though not a restaurant by any means, wanted to show its support as well

The firefighter and veteran-owned recreational facility that’s donating 50 percent of its sales lets customers choose a lane and throw an axe against a wooden slab with target markings; relieving stress while helping with the good cause.

“My husband, being an active firefighter for the City of Kirkwood, I mean, I could get that call any day and I would hope that the family and the community would come support me too,” said owner Lorie Lofquist.

The Axe House is holding a similar event on January 14 where it’s donating another 50 percent of its sales to O’Connor.