Fundraiser for wronged Bahamian Fyre Festival chef exceeds $130,000
With the new year came two visceral documentaries on the Fyre Festival disaster from streaming titans Hulu and Netflix. Both explored the chaos leading up to the event, and just how far Billy McFarland had gone in scamming and defrauding investors, staff, and fans alike.
Netflix’s documentary focused more on the business angle, taking an in-depth look at local Bahamian businesses that were left unpaid by McFarland and his team. One story in particular was heartbreaking: Maryann Rolle, chef and owner of a catering business on St. Martin. “Back in April 2017 I pushed myself to the limit catering no less than a 1000 meals per day. Breakfast, lunch and dinner were all prepared and delivered by Exuma Point to Coco Plum Beach and Roker’s Point where the main events were scheduled to take place,” she began on her GoFundMe page. Following Fyre’s downfall, she felt compelled to pay the employees under her and drained her entire life savings of $50k to do so. Her credit was also ruined amid the scandal.
Luckily, the public has risen to the occasion. The fundraiser has since raised upwards of $135k as of press time, restoring her savings and other damages caused to her and her business. Ja Rule also reached out to her on Instagram, voicing his heartbreak over the situation. The rapper, who at one point called himself a co-founder of the festival, also claimed he’d been “bamboozled and lead astray” by McFarland and company.
H/T: Rolling Stone