Pac Rim Helps Member Recover from Flood

Alcaraz Appliances owners Cesar Alcaraz and Yasmin Cortez receive a check for $7,400 from the Pac Rim Region Board at this week’s Summit. Standing to their right is Member Relations Manager Arlene Soto.

The rains were of biblical proportion, and so was the response

By Andy Kriege, YSN

Two months have passed since a winter storm brought devastating floods across many parts of San Diego County.

California authorities called January 22 the wettest day since 1850. In fact, in just one three-hour period, the city received 3 inches of rain, almost twice the amount that typically falls the entire month. 

One of the hardest hit areas was National City, where BrandSource member Alcaraz Appliances operated their family retail business. The store is owned by the husband-and-wife team of Cesar Alcaraz and Yasmin Cortez.

It was several weeks later that Pac Rim Member Relations Manager Arlene Soto was made aware of their situation. “They sent me an email telling me that they had a new address,” Soto said. “Yasmin told me their building was severely damaged and they were given 90 days to vacate. Luckily, they found a new place to move their business relatively close to their previous location.”

Cortez also shared a couple of pictures with Soto of the catastrophic flooding in the business’s rented showroom.

A massive winter storm flooded Alcaraz Appliances, causing a near total loss of all inventory.

“The pictures were heartbreaking,” Soto said. “I shared them with the board members, and they took it upon themselves to take some action to help them out.”  

Pac Rim board member and past president Mark Pardini of Pardini Appliance got the ball rolling. “We connected via email and the board voted to give them some assistance,” Pardini said. “Bob Middleton of Middleton’s made a motion to have the region allocate some Region funds to help them out, and then other board members stepped up and contributed more.

“They never asked for anything,” Pardini continued. “They can use it to pay rent, replace some of that inventory or whatever else they need to do. We just hope that it helps get them back on their feet and back in business.”

All told, the donations totaled $7,400. Soto said the couple’s insurance provided little coverage for the huge loss that they suffered. “Yasmin expressed how grateful they were, how truly unexpected and gracious the gift was, and how it would help them cover the move and the rent at the new location.”

Both Alcaraz and Cortez attended the BrandSource Summit this week in Las Vegas.

Pardini said it was important for Alcaraz and Cortez to step away from the chaos and join their fellow dealers at the show. It was there during their region meeting on Monday that the Pac Rim members decided to surprise the couple with the generous gift of support.

“They were truly shocked and grateful,” Pardini said, “and it was fantastic that the members at the region meeting were able to participate in the presentation of the check. We wish them well in rebuilding their business, and like all our members, we are here to support them.”

YSN publisher AVB BrandSource is the nation’s largest merchandising and marketing co-op for independent appliance, mattress, furniture and CE dealers.

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