Joey’s Classic Italian Dining general manager has ‘never seen (Boeheim) touch’ alcohol in 15 to 20 years

September 16, 2020

first_imgUPDATED: Friday, Feb. 22, 2019 at 3:42 p.m.About 30 minutes before police arrived on Interstate 690 to investigate a fatal crash involving Jim Boeheim, 74, who struck and killed a man while driving Wednesday night, Boeheim was sitting with his wife, Juli, and two other men at Joey’s Classic Italian Dining restaurant on Thompson Road in Syracuse.Rick DeCuffa, general manager of Joey’s, said he remembers Boeheim first arriving at the restaurant — alone — before the rest of his party joined him. The four of them ate in a corner booth in the back of the restaurant, an area that Boeheim has frequented for 15 to 20 years, DeCuffa said. “He’s extremely private, and we let them do their thing,” DeCuffa said. “It’s one of the reasons he loves coming here, we don’t bother him.”Juli and the two others were in good spirits after Boeheim led the Orange to their 69-49 win over No. 18 Louisville earlier on Wednesday, the general manager said. DeCuffa added that Boeheim didn’t appear as excited as Juli and the others. There wasn’t a lot of “bubbliness” from the head coach, DeCuffa said. Instead, Boeheim smiled as he walked to his table like he usually does, DeCuffa said.AdvertisementThis is placeholder textWhile Boeheim’s guests will sometimes drink a glass of wine with their meals, DeCuffa has never seen Boeheim drink alcohol, he said. “In all the years (Boeheim’s) been here, I’ve never seen him touch a drop of alcohol,” DeCuffa said. “Not a drop, which is mind-boggling.”DeCuffa said he didn’t see Boeheim drink alcohol Wednesday night. After the meal, which lasted under an hour, DeCuffa said, the four people all left the restaurant at the same time. Boeheim reportedly left Joey’s and drove away from the restaurant until he merged onto I-690, at some point. Jorge Jimenez, 51, was in a vehicle that swerved into a divider and stopped in the middle of I-690 on Wednesday, Syracuse Police Department Sgt. Matthew Malinowski said in a statement on Thursday. Jimenez was driving a Dodge Charger, an employee at Erie Car Care Center confirmed to The Daily Orange. The oncoming vehicle, driven by Boeheim along I-690, tried to avoid the Dodge Charger but hit Jimenez, who was standing on the side of the road, police said.Jimenez was transported to Upstate University Hospital where he was pronounced dead, according to Malinowski.“I am heartbroken that a member of our community died as the result of last night’s accident,” Boeheim said in a statement Thursday. “Juli (Boeheim) and I extend our deepest sympathies to the Jimenez family. Out of respect for those involved, I will not be providing further comment at this time.”CLARIFICATION: In a previous version of this post, the route Jim Boeheim took from Joey’s Classic Italian Dining to Interstate 690 was not entirely clear. As of Friday afternoon, the Syracuse Police Department had not publicly announced what highway entrance Boeheim used Wednesday night to get on I-690. Comments Published on February 21, 2019 at 4:35 pm Contact Nick: nialvare@syr.edu | @nick_a_alvarez Facebook Twitter Google+last_img

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