Breckenridge Texan

Community coming together to help Rodney Hartfield as he recovers from transplant surgery

Community coming together to help Rodney Hartfield as he recovers from transplant surgery
February 16
20:34 2023

By Carla McKeown and Tony Pilkington/Breckenridge Texan

In 2020, when the pandemic shut down the schools, restaurants and many other businesses for several months, the Breckenridge community simultaneously pulled together while practicing the new concept of “social distancing.” But, one local man shined like a beacon through the COVID fog: Rodney Hartfield, the owner of  Pit Stop Bar-B-Q. And now he needs the community’s help.

During the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020, Rodney Hartfield turned his Pit Stop Bar-B-Q restaurant into a staging area where volunteers put together backpacks of food for local kids. (Photo by Tony Pilkington/Breckenridge Texan)

Almost three years ago, Rodney closed his barbecue restaurant, as required by Gov. Abbott, and then he organized a program to make sure the children in Breckenridge had enough to eat, working with volunteers and donors to fill backpacks with food and then deliver them to families every Saturday. Then, last March, the Breckenridge Texan had the privilege of presenting Rodney with the Breckenridge Chamber of Commerce’s Business of the Year Award for Pit Stop Bar-B-Q. We couldn’t have been happier with the Chamber’s choice for the award, and we were proud to be a part of honoring Rodney and his business.

On Jan. 1 of this year, Rodney received a kidney and liver transplant at Methodist Dallas Medical Center. Many people may not have known that he needed a transplant, because Rodney doesn’t talk about himself much. And, if it were up to him, we might not know that he and his family could use our help right now.

The entire process has been expensive, and as word spread around town that he and his family need some assistance, fundraisers and offers to help started popping up. About three weeks after the initial surgery, Rodney left the hospital for a hotel that serves as a step-down facility, where he continued his recovery from the transplant surgery. This week, he had to return to the hospital due to some complications.

If you’d like to help Rodney and his family with the expenses related to his surgery and recovery, here are some various fundraisers going on:

  • Donate directly to the family via the mobile payment services CashApp or Zelle to his mom, Rose Hartfield — Zelle: or CashApp: $GrannyBenz — or Amanda Jamison via Venmo — @Amanda-Jamison-12
  • Buy some barbecue from V-Dubb’s Smokehouse (the food truck previously known as Hot Rods and Hogs B-B-Q). From Tuesday, Feb. 21, through Saturday, Feb. 25, Gary Wadzeck, co-owner and pitmaster of V-Dubb’s, is going to donate 10 percent of the V-Dubb’s profits to Rodney and his family. V-Dubb’s usually sets up in the Tractor Supply parking lot on West Walker Street, or you can give them a call at 432-308-0420.  “Some of you see us as competitors in Breckenridge for BBQ, I don’t see it that way,” Gary wrote on Facebook. “Mr. Rodney has made a name for himself and has been here a long time. I’ve met him a few times and he was nothing but nice and respectful. As a fellow business owner here in Breckenridge I know how hard it is to make it. As a community if one of us is hurting we all are hurting. … Thank you for your continued support.”
  • Participate in the “Double Down on Rodney’s Double Transplant – Cornhole Tournament,” scheduled for Saturday, Feb. 25, in Alvord, Texas, by being a player, sponsor or donor. The event is being hosted by Rodney’s family, and all of the money raised will go directly to Rodney. The tournament is scheduled for noon to 3 p.m., and the entry fee is $75 per team. Additionally, a meal (brisket sandwich, chips and drink) will be available for $10 per person. There will also be a silent auction and t-shirts for sale. To register for the cornhole tournament, message Megan Nichols at 940-626-0586. To be a sponsor or make a donation, send a Facebook message to Rebekah Hartfield at
  • Buy a “Share Your Spare: Rodney’s Road to Recovery” t-shirt online at Workman By Design.
  • Continue to visit the Pit Stop at 303 S. Breckenridge Ave. and make sure Rodney’s restaurant stays in business while he’s recovering.
  • Send a message to Rodney or Amanda on Facebook to let them know you’re thinking about them. They may not be able to respond right away, but they’ll appreciate your support.

There have been a couple of fundraisers that have already wrapped up, including a drawing by Ashley Duran with The Shirt Shop (featuring several items donated by local businesses) and a drawing by Bertie & Olif Boutique. If there are more fundraisers organized, send the information to the Breckenridge Texan, and we can update this list, as well as put them on our Calendar of Events.

Back in 2020, when he saw a need in the community, Rodney immediately stepped up, commenting, “If nothing else, we’ll make sure the kids eat.” And, that’s what he and the other volunteers did.

Last year, as he accepted the Business of the Year Award, in his typical, humble way, Rodney credited the community for his success: “We made it, but it’s all because of all of you people. I really appreciate all y’all have done for me and for my family. Any time I asked and needed anything, everybody came out and supported us. And, I’d just like to say thank you.”

Whether he’s asking for it right now or not, Rodney needs the community’s support, and we’re sure he’ll be appreciative of any assistance he and his family receive.



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