SAN ANTONIO – A San Antonio business that customizes food trucks is stepping in to help Olympic Gold Medalist Tamyra Mensah-Stock get the food truck her mother always wanted to have.
Mensah-Stock outperformed everyone in women’s wrestling at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.
Cameron Davies, CEO and president of Cruising Kitchens, said he saw Mensah-Stock’s story and wanted to help.
Mensah-Stock has always wanted to provide for her mother, especially after her father was killed in a car crash.
“He only got a chance to see me win second at state my first year,” Mensah-Stock said. “But any time he saw me on the mat, he would go crazy and be the loudest one in the room. He is from Ghana, so he would tell me every time ‘to kill the person’ that I was up against, and when I would destroy them, he would be ecstatic. He died in a crash after they say he fell asleep at the wheel.”
After that loss, Mensah-Stock said the struggle got intense for her mother.
“My dad was this big entrepreneur, so he would help my mom out financially. So when he passed away, my mom struggled even more. I do not like seeing her struggle, and I never knew exactly how to help her, and then when I realize how good I was in wrestling, I was like, ‘Alright, I got you!’”
Shonda Wells, Mensah-Stock’s mother, worked long-hour days as a certified nursing assistant, but she would cook food out the back of her truck.
“She has this red truck and would pull around the food pit on the back of it,” Mensah-Stock said. “She calls it her little side hustle.”
“Her truck would be so disgusting. I would be like, ‘Mommy, please get organized.’ But she couldn’t because she was working out of her truck trying to figure it out.”
Mensah-Stock said she made a promise to her mother.
“She has a lot of energy. She would go, ‘Come get that barbeque! Come get that barbeque!’ It is actually embarrassing! I go, ‘Stop yelling; they will come because they see the smoke,’” Mensah-Stock said with a laugh. “I was like, ‘Please stop, and I promise you I am going to win, and I am going to get you that truck.’ And she said, ‘Ok, I’ll stop.’”
After her win, Mensah-Stock planned to use $30,000 of her $37,000 prize money to give her mother a food truck. That is when Davies stepped in.
“When I saw her, right then I knew it was something special,” Davies said. “To see how much she loved America. I came back to the office and told our creative team, marketing team and all, and it was 100% unanimous, ‘Let’s do it.’ We got the capability. We got the facility, and we got the team. Let’s make her mom the best truck ever.”
Davies said he felt the need to help because he has been so blessed after being broke 10 years ago.
“This is coming from the goodness of our hearts because we haven’t always had to the ability to help others,” he said. “Now, we are going to make it happen for Tamyra. How can you not feel that emotion of a girl who grew up struggling, went through high school, lost her father, lost her uncle, wanting to give up? But she didn’t. She built stronger, and she goes to Tokyo and wins a gold medal.”
Davies surprised Mensah-Stock with a Facebook video he put out, and once they were connected, he was able to join Mensah-Stock in surprising her mother with the news.
“God is good all the time, and all the time, God is good,” Mensah-Stock said.
Davies said it would take about four to five months to complete the truck, but it will be highly customized with many modern additions. They also plan to raise money for Wells to start up her barbeque food truck business.
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