JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — Jerry Moran has been in the restaurant business for more than three decades. He takes pride in his Italian cooking and his homemade New York-style cheesecake.
The New York native said he was taught by the best chefs in the Empire State.
"I bake four cheesecakes every week or so, they are almost like a soufflé they come up and then they sink," Moran said.
Moran is the chef and owner of Le Cena Restaurant. He believes in giving his best while demanding the best.
"I always do what I think is right and I get in trouble for that," he said.
Last Sunday Moran was at the Farmer's Market getting tomatoes when he received a text from a customer about a man in Baptist Hospital.
"His dying wish was to have some NY-style cheesecake," Moran said.
Elizabeth Ross, a family friend of the dying man posted more details on her Facebook page:
"Doctors gave her grandfather morphine, removed his feeding tube, and told him he could eat whatever he wanted. He wanted authentic, NY style cheesecake."
When Moran learned of the need he felt he had to respond.
"I said yea lets take him some cake," he said.
Moran hand-delivered the NY-style cheesecake to the hospital. Though he did not meet the dying man, he did get the chance to fulfill his last wish.
The man has been identified as 87-year-old Calvin Vees.
On Wednesday, Moran received a nice handwritten thank you card from Ms. Ross about what he did.
It reads in part:
"People would call that a small act of kindness, I call it Amazing thank you so much."
Words of gratitude from a grateful heart after an unexpected act of kindness.
"There's a lot of little things you can do in the community," Moran said. "There are a lot of things that people do that no one knows about. I think if we do stuff like that it may be a better world."
Two years ago Moran opened his La Cena Ristorante in the Murray Hill community, giving back when he can.
When asked if he would do it again, he simply said sure.
The chef wasn't looking for any attention, he just wanted to give a dying man his last desire; a slice of NY-style cheesecake.
Moran doesn't know the man's name. But his act of kindness made a difference and gave a dying man his last wish.
On Wednesday, Mr. Calvin Vees passed away.