Fairfield Food Pantry working to re-open after car crash damages building

The Fairfield Food Pantry won’t be closed for long after a vehicle crashed last week through its front facade.

“I am absolutely committed to getting re-opened next week,” said Wayne Patten, the pantry’s manager.

FIRST REPORT: Food pantry closed after car crashes into building

The May 3 accident involved a client of the pantry at 1085 Magie Ave. who lost control of her vehicle and drove it into the building, according to pantry and police officials.

Patten said the re-opening is likely to happen next Thursday, but the number one question people are asking is what other pantries they can go to in the meantime.

"People can go to SharedHarvest.org to get other pantries they can get help from," he said.

The food pantry opened in 1997 and now serves as many as 700 people per month in Fairfield and Fairfield Twp., and in parts of Hamilton’s Lindenwald neighborhood and Ross Twp.

The accident happened about 10 minutes before the end of the day when Patten and three volunteers were behind the counter. The car crashed through the front wall and demolished the counter.

The pantry was busy earlier in the day and Judy Dirksen, a pantry trustee and co-founder, said if the accident happened then it would have been horrific.

“We are so thankful the customers weren’t there,” she said.

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Benedicta Ochiagha, 33, of Fairfield, was cited for failure to control a gray 2007 Toyota Camry.

According to the report, at 2:53 p.m. on May 3, Ochiagha was driving into the pantry’s parking lot of Magie Road when her car “collided with the front of the building after failing to stop in a parking spot.”

She was injured in the accident and transported to Mercy Hospital-Fairfield.

Clients with questions should call the pantry at 513-829-9047.

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