The Richmond Register

Local News

January 28, 2013

The Starving Monkey wants to ‘satisfy your crave’

Family starts restaurant home-delivery service to honor late daughter, give back to community


After the tragic loss of his 8-year-old daughter in May, Jeff Davis, of Richmond, was done dealing with negative people in his life.

He wasn’t sure if it was the angry truckers he encountered every day at his job at a travel center, he said, “but something clicked.”

After 22 years of managing service stations, he prayed about it and resigned.

His new career path “has taken on a life of its own,” said Davis, whose unique Richmond business is “all about positivity and good old-fashioned customer service.”

The Starving Monkey is a restaurant home delivery service. Partnered with local businesses, Davis and his delivery drivers will bring hot, fresh food to your door for a flat fee of $5.99 (per restaurant). There is a $10 minimum per order.

The fledgling business is in its first stages of “working out the kinks,” Davis said. He asks for the community’s patience as they conduct “soft runs” until The Starving Monkey builds a full fleet of delivery drivers.

Davis is currently partnered with seven restaurants, each chosen to provide variety, but also to promote “the little guy,” he said. For example, instead of seeking a big chain Mexican restaurant, he partnered with Nuevo Vallarta, which is locally owned and operated.

“I wanted to surround myself with some amazing restaurant owners,” Davis said. “With the way Richmond is growing, there is such a need for this in the community. This is what people want.”

Several years ago, while on a business trip to Chicago, Davis and a friend were staying in a hotel and didn’t want to go out to eat and risk getting lost in the big city.

In the hotel directory, they found a service that would deliver anything you wanted.

“I said, ‘wow, we need this in Richmond,’” Davis recalled. “But the idea just stuck in my head and it never went anywhere because I already had a career.”

But on April 27, his life changed forever when his daughter Caya fell from a swing while playing with a friend.

Caya then came running to her mother crying, saying she had hit her head. Shortly afterward, Caya collapsed and became unconscious.

She was taken to Baptist Health in Richmond (then Pattie A. Clay Regional Medical Center) where she was stabilized, and then sent to UK Children’s Hospital.

Caya turned 8-years-old while in the hospital, her father said, where she remained on life support until her death.

Instead of a floral arrangement, an assortment of toy monkeys were placed on Caya’s casket. His daughter loved monkeys, Davis said, and she probably owned 30 or 40 toy monkeys.

“I’m taking Caya’s concept and turning it into something positive for the community — a community that gave us so much in our time of need,” he said.

His family went searching for “adorable and cute” monkeys and bought the rights to the logo. They began dropping business cards off at restaurants to peak interest.

Davis started a The Starving Monkey Facebook page to gauge the need in the community.

One Facebook fan, Natalie Dunaway, said, “This is the best thing ever. For me, it is a very wonderful thing because I have no car and, as of right now, I am so sick of pizza, Chinese (food) and subs! You will be getting plenty of business from me when you start!”

For now, Davis has been working with the Richmond Chamber, the Small Business Development Center at Eastern Kentucky University and Richmond-based website developer Startup Production to streamline the ordering and delivery process.

He is collaborating with Richmond Tourism to put menu guides and brochures in all of the local hotels when The Starving Monkey is up and running at full force.

“Starting this business is helping us heal from the loss of our daughter,” Davis said. “It’s about customer service — with so much negative in the world, we need something that’s positive.”

“I know Caya is with God,” he said, his voice cracking. “I still can’t wrap my head around it, but I know she is smiling on Daddy.”

For details, visit The Starving Monkey Facebook page or visit

Crystal Wylie can be reached at cwylie@

or 623-1669, Ext. 6696.

Text Only
Local News
  • 4-24 UKatWaco1.jpg Wildcats encourage Cardinals to work hard in school

    University of Kentucky student athletes Kastine Evans, a guard on the women’s basketball team, and Jon Hood, a guard on the men’s team, stopped by Waco Elementary School on Wednesday to talk about the benefits of working hard in school.

    April 23, 2014 4 Photos

  • Mayor, commissioner pay changed

    The Richmond City Commission approved 5-1 a new pay scale for the mayor and commissioners at a special-called meeting Wednesday morning.

    April 23, 2014

  • 4-24 Lorenzo McWilliams.jpg Harrodsburg to get old Richmond police mobile computers

    Richmond is donating to the city of Harrodsburg eight of 39 old computers formerly used in police cruisers.

    April 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • 4-24 HOSAblooddrive.jpg Health science students organize blood drive

    Aside from the gift cards and free snacks, 50 Madison County high school students have other reasons for donating 35 pints of blood Wednesday to the Kentucky Blood Center at Madison Central High School.

    April 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • Third student charged in dorm room robbery

    A third person, originally thought to be a robbery victim, was charged Wednesday in connection with an armed robbery that occurred March 30 on Eastern Kentucky University’s campus

    April 23, 2014

  • Bucher Family plant sale starts Friday

    The Bucher Family annual plant sale, a yearly tradition in Madison County for 15 years, will kick off Friday morning.

    April 23, 2014

  • 4-23 Gravestone.jpg In search of the last resting place

    At a popular illegal dump site off Bybee Loop in Waco, two marble grave markers were among some items found there by Pat and Ronnie Aldridge, residents who live about 250 yards from the area.

    April 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • Fiscal court awards EMA bids

    Two more bids were awarded at Tuesday’s Madison County Fiscal Court meeting for the emergency operations agency.

    April 22, 2014

  • 4-23 Peter Crowe.jpg Intoxicated man charged with wanton endangerment

    A 27-year-old Richmond man was charged Sunday with second-degree wanton endangerment after he was found intoxicated and walking with several young children in the Keystone Drive area, according to a Richmond police report.

    April 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • Absentee voting available for May 20 election

    Walk-in absentee voting for the May 20 primary has begun and will continue until May 19, County Clerk Kenny Barger announced Tuesday at the Madison Fiscal Court meeting.

    April 22, 2014

AP Video
SKorea Ferry Toll Hits 156, Search Gets Tougher Video Shows Possible Syrian Gas Attack Cubs Superfans Celebrate Wrigley's 100th Raw: Cattle Truck Overturns in Texas Admirers Flock to Dole During Kansas Homecoming Raw: Erupting Volcanoes in Guatemala and Peru Alibaba IPO Could Be Largest Ever for Tech Firm FBI Joining Probe of Suburban NY 'Swatting' Call U.S. Paratroopers in Poland, Amid Ukraine Crisis US Reviews Clemency for Certain Inmates Raw: Violence Erupts in Rio Near Olympic Venue Raw: Deadly Bombing in Egypt Raw: What's Inside a Commercial Jet Wheel Well Raw: Obama Arrives in Japan for State Visit Raw: Anti-Obama Activists Fight Manila Police Motels Near Disney Fighting Homeless Problem Michigan Man Sees Thanks to 'bionic Eye' S.C. Man Apologizes for Naked Walk in Wal-Mart Chief Mate: Crew Told to Escape After Passengers
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide

Should Richmond rezone the southwest corner of Main Street and Tates Creek Avenue to B-1 (Neighborhood Business) with restrictions to allow construction of a financial services office?

     View Results