CHARLOTTE, N.C. (WBTV) - Carolina Panthers owner David Tepper and new head coach Matt Rhule stopped by Brooks’ Sandwich House on Tuesday to show support for the Brooks family after the tragic death of co-owner Scott Brooks in December.
The Athletic’s Jourdan Rodrigue was at the the longtime NoDa eatery when the tandem paid Brooks’ Sandwich House a visit.
“Tepper made Rhule pay,” tweeted Rodrigue.
Scott Brooks’ twin brother and co-owner of the restaurant, David Brooks, said it was a nice surprise to see the pair show up.
“That one just really came out of the blue, but it was such a nice surprise, it really was,” David Brooks said. “It’s like what my brother always said. What he looks for is the quality in someone’s heart. It doesn’t make any difference who you are, what you drive, how much money you make, if you’re genuine in heart, you’re a genuine person.”
David Brooks said Tepper and Rhule gave their condolences and brought a gift.
“Sorry about the tragedy and stuff, glad to see that you’re moving on," David Brooks said, "And [they] gave me a signed helmet and everything... it was really special to me and my family.”
“I hope everybody embraces him and lets him do some great things with his team,” David Brooks added.
According to Panthers.com, Tepper and Rhule mingled with fans in line and made their way to the counter to order before dropping off the autographed helmet.
“I love going to local places and I love to eat,” Tepper said. “Places like that are landmark-type places. I’m happy to go there. I’ll be happy to go again. It was a lot of fun.”
Last weekend, hundreds of people formed a line that stretched around the restaurant to show their appreciation for the late Scott Brooks as the restaurant re-opened.
Scott Brooks was shot to death while opening his restaurant in December. The people responsible for his death still haven’t been arrested.
On Saturday, his family opened the shop for the first time since the murder. Before opening, Brooks’ twin brother, David, gathered those in attendance in prayer.
Police were on scene asking people for any information they may have that could solve Brooks’ murder. A $21,000 reward has been established for information that leads to an arrest.
“Just how hard the Brooks family is working to get ready for Saturday, and everything they’ve been through, if I can stay up for a few hours and just work my butt off, no problem,” JD Harris says.
Harris owns Glory Days Apparel. The clothing company created $6,000-worth of t-shirts, and counting to raise money for Habitat for Humanity.
The phrase printed on the shirt designed for the restaurant reads, “Too Blessed to be Stressed,” the motto Scott Brooks used to say.
“It’s awful,” Harris says. “You never want to hear something like that on the news, or what’s going on.”