In honor of Black History Month and as a part of the Profiles in Character Campaign, the Coalition for American Renewal and the Agape Project want to spend this special day remembering one of Denver’s most beloved citizens:
DADDY BRUCE RANDOLPH
Today we wish to celebrate the birthday of a man whose accomplishments benefited the whole community around him and whose life stands as an example for future generations. The late Daddy Bruce himself would celebrate his birthday by taking a truck load of food and clothing back to his hometown, Pine Bluff, Arkansas. He celebrated the gift of his life by bringing gifts to others.
Daddy Bruce was the restaurateur who provided holiday feasts for the needy of Denver for more than 25 years before his death in 1994, at the age of 94. He began feeding the hungry in the 1960s with a Thanksgiving dinner for 200 persons at City Park, where he had carried his portable grill and dished out holiday dinner. It became a tradition and his Thanksgiving give-away meals grew astronomically year after year.
For many years he donated his own time and money to serving Thanksgiving dinners. He later took in donations and many local celebrities – including members of the Denver Broncos, police department, and clergy – helped Daddy dish out tons of turkey, ribs, dressing, potatoes, and yams. He also gave away clothes and food on his birthday, Easter and Christmas. One year he even dyed 25 000 eggs for an enormous Easter Egg hunt.
His example of living for the sake of others and taking responsibility for his own community and its needs became an inspiration that lived on years after he was gone. The Thanksgiving Feed A Family is now close to celebrating its 50th anniversary Currently carried on by the Epworth Foundation and its genero sponsors, they have distributed more than 45,500 baskets of food to Denver area families in need This past year they served over 7 000 plus families during the Thanksgiving holiday season. The event has become the largest project of its kind in the nation.
A restaurant owner who started his business at the incredible age of 63, Daddy Bruce not only showed amazing perseverance and determination, but also a ‘heart of gold’ as he would spend his last cent helping those who were less fortunate. Even though history will indicate that Daddy Bruce died broke, it will also show the rewards and accomplishments he made during his life. He was a man who surely ‘buried his treasures in Heaven’ (Matthew 6:20).
As such, the Coalition for American Renewal wants to recognize Daddy Bruce Randolph’s contributions as a part of its Profiles In Character campaign. This campaign encourages and engages citizens to focus on the way forward with a vision for the common good, and commitment to integrity, courage, self-reliance and industry. All of these and more, Daddy Bruce Randolph embodied.