A plastic jug had been placed on the counter near the cash register at the 7-Eleven in Sag Harbor to collect donations for Jhenny Bueno Arias, the severely injured “best employee” of Saqib Hameed, the owner of the Long Island Avenue store. Mr. Hameed is handling everything for Ms. Arias, who “has nobody,” he said on Tuesday.
The plastic jug was stolen Saturday, according the store’s manager that night, Muhammad-Khalid Nazir, who called Sag Harbor Village police when a man ran into the store, grabbed the jug, and drove off.
Ms. Bueno Arias, a 36-year-old single mother of four, was struck by a car as she walked home from work on Jan. 15. She was airlifted to Stony Brook University Medical Center with life-threatening injuries that included several fractured bones and punctured and lacerated organs. The car’s driver, David Corigliano of East Hampton, 60, was not charged with any wrongdoing and remained with Ms. Bueno Arias after his vehicle struck her. She had been crossing the multi-lane intersection where Jermain Avenue crosses Main Street and becomes Brick Kiln Road.
While a police investigation is ongoing concerning the stolen donations, the dollar amount of which was not known, and while police study evidence captured by surveillance cameras, Mr. Hameed’s focus is on his employee, whom he visits daily. In an interview on Tuesday, he said that she is staying with a friend and is unable to walk or care for herself in any way. Discharged from the hospital because she didn’t have insurance, she still has a long road to recovery and is in need of constant care, he said.
“I am trying to get her into an inpatient rehab,” Mr. Hameed said. He said he was grateful for donations received at a recent bake sale held at the store, and was able to pay her rent with the money raised.
Ms. Bueno Arias is treasured by her boss, who called her honest, friendly, and reliable, and she’s a favorite among customers of all ages as well. “The whole town is helping with an open heart,” Mr. Hameed said.
Charlie Canavan of Sag Harbor, who plans events for the Hysterical Society, will donate the proceeds from a $40 culinary stroll down Main Street on Saturday during HarborFrost. Music will be courtesy of the New Dawn Trio. Attendees have been invited to join the charitable fun at 1:30 p.m. for food and a cash bar at Il Capuccino. Other stops will be made at L.T. Burger, Page at 63 Main, and Muse in the Harbor restaurants.
Joe Lauro, another Sag Harbor resident, has gotten in touch with Mr. Hameed in hopes of assisting with money from Island Gift of Life, which he said is “there for situations just like this.”
Donations can be made in cash or by check made out to Jhenny Bueno Arias and dropped off at 7-Eleven, or checks can be sent to Mr. Hameed at P.O. Box 3134, Sag Harbor 11963.