This is Mike Fucci from Watertown, owner of Chef Mike’s in Needham.
He fancies himself some sort of celebrity chef and has been featured on the food network, on top of receiving lots of attention from the media.
Mike is well liked and popular because of his folksy, old school, fat Italian guy persona. He don’t take no crap from nobody, but he’s also incredibly caring and tells you he’s a hero in the community without having to say that he’s a hero in the community. During COVID he gained a lot of attention at his catering business by making Facebook videos bragging about how he’s helping the community by SELLING meat and giving free meals to low income families in Needham.
Mike often humble brags about knowing celebrities on a personal level. Dennis Eckersley and him go way back, but they hadn’t seen each other since their good friend Jimmy passed and agreed to pose for this photo.
Nothing like sharing memories with your old pals!
He was so close with Anthony Bourdain that he called him Tony. They had an hour long conversation after one of his shows, because apparently Tony had nothing else to do and figured he’d strike up conversation with a stranger for an hour before exchanging numbers. Then the next time Tony came to town they met up at a local restaurant and Mike told him about how the Food Network was calling and begging for him to be on their channel. Tony, the funny guy that he was, told Mike “we all have to make our own mistakes in life.” God damn was that son of a bitch stubborn! But Tony’s dead now and Mike misses him like Hell.
They were basically best friends.
Mike is a real humble guy who almost never brags about his charitable good deeds, unless he’s telling unconfirmed anecdotes on Facebook about free catering events he does for women with cancer who suddenly can’t afford to pay him after getting diagnosed with cancer.
Three months later he saved the day for another woman who paid him money to cater her wedding.
“Sometimes you have to do what you have to do to help others in a tough spot.”
She gave you money to provide a service.
Mike is really sick of people who are trying to get the best deal for corporate events too.
He’s the “nice guy” who doesn’t care about making money, but you aren’t allowed to shop around after he gives you a quote!
According to Mike business was going really well.
Except his reviews say otherwise. Mike has a lot of turnover due to his behavior, despite publicly being the “nice guy,” and seems to turn a lot of people off with his temper and mouth.
He was recently accused of stealing $6K for a church group that paid him a deposit to cater a retreat for disadvantaged youth around Christmas. He allegedly stood them up, is not returning their calls, and won’t refund the money. But being the narcissist that he is Mike was able to flip it back on the church group, accusing them of owing him money because they switched the dates, while praising himself for “overlooking” the balance that he feels he is owed for food he never provided. He also threatened to sue the church group for slandering him with an honest review of his business.
Another review said that Mike was hired to do an event for the Needham Police Department, but Mike forgot the date and made up a lie and said it would be better to bring the food later because none of it was cooked yet. Meanwhile a bunch of hungry cops stood there with nothing to eat and Mike did what he always does – blamed the customer for being wrong.
In true narcissistic form Mike then bragged about all the free food he gives to Needham PD and FD, said he never missed a catering date (despite being accused of this several times), and accused the man who paid for the food of doing it for a photo op. He then told the customer that he would no longer be doing business with him and accused him of being unprofessional.
Except the only one who posed for a photo op was Mike, and nothing he said was true.
On his Facebook page a woman alleged that four months ago Mike didn’t show up with food for a catered event at the VFW so they had to order pizza. He also apparently did this previously the prior Thanksgiving. He offered the customer a refund while blaming her for her harsh words.
Then there was the wedding he supposed to cater for Nicholas and Rachael Basedekis in December of 2018, which he ended up getting sued over.search.page.5-6
Chef Mike agreed to cater the event in Arlington, which required him to obtain a permit from the town. The Basedekis’ offered to try to get the permits for him if he couldn’t do it, but in response he just asked them for more money in addition to the 50% deposit they had already paid. He had 8 months to get the permit from the town, but by December he still hadn’t gotten around to it. A few days before the event he finally applied and was denied because of some red tape due to the fact that his kitchen was located in Boston.
Luckily the town of Arlington was willing to help him fix this by getting him in contact with someone who could resolve the matter. But instead of doing that Mike told the Basedekis’ that it was an “Arlington issue,” and didn’t do anything. Three days before the event they told Chef Mike that they needed to hire someone else if he couldn’t get the permit, and he told them it was “all set.” He continued to blame the town of Arlington, accusing them of having their heads in their ass, while making no effort to secure the permit. When they asked for a refund he told them they could get the refund from the town of Arlington, which obviously wasn’t going to happen and would leave them without food at the wedding. Mike didn’t show up on the wedding date and ignored their requests for a refund, so they had to shell out $7,600 to a different company at the last minute. They were obviously upset and wanted their $8,800 deposit back so they hired an attorney who sent Mike demand letters for breach of contract which he ignored. Mike then dissolved his company and started a new one.
Instead of just paying them what he owed them for services he never provided on their wedding day, Mike paid for a lawyer to fight the case instead. He ended up losing as the plaintiffs won a judgment for $15,365.84.
It’s unclear if he ever paid them.
Mike is no stranger to creditors either. Barclays Bank Delaware won a $1,764.62 judgment against him after he defaulted by not showing up for court.
He also lost a $1,040.89 judgment to a collections agency that year.
He declared bankruptcy in 2011, but had two more judgments against him in Malden prior to that.
Another woman we spoke with was hired by Mike to work one of his events but never got paid the $171 she was owed. He said he was going to pay her, then made up a bunch of excuses before finally telling her to drive 40 miles and get it from him herself.
So she showed up and instead of giving her the money he owed her he told her to “get the f*** off my property right now,” while claiming that business was going well for him.
A month later he was out of business.
Instead of blaming himself for being a horrible business owner who missed several events he got paid for and then attacked customers for being upset about it, Mike decided to make a Facebook post blaming the landlord and “malignant a**holes of Needham,” while praising himself for taking care of elderly and low income people.
The textbook narcissist did what narcissists always do – accuse others of being narcissists. Then he blamed fat married women for stirring shit up, told them to choke on a bag of dicks, and announced that he was moving to a place where people would appreciate him for being the hero that he is.
A week or so later he announced that he was going on a long mental health vacation somewhere in the south, and said that he was gonna start looking out for “number one.”
Number one, of course, would be him. The guy who routinely collects money from clients, refuses to provide services, and then belittles them when they complain, is FINALLY going to start thinking about himself first.
Then in early February Mike announced that he had stage 2 stomach cancer.
Being the humble man that he is, Mike rejected the prayers people were offering for him, claiming that he was getting what he deserved because he had been a bad person in his younger years.
Obviously this post was designed for people to post comments like “Don’t say that Mike, you’re such a good person who feeds the elderly and disabled,” so that Mike could feel better about himself.
Then the next day he announced that he would be skipping the depression phase and going right to the fighting stage, because he’s a warrior.
You got this Mike! Go Mike, Go!
A week ago Chef Mike’s post started getting gloomy, and he announced that he was seeking “alternative treatment” in Florida, but said they didn’t take insurance.
Which is interesting, because a month before that he said he was planning on moving south.
Isn’t that convenient?
He claimed that doctors at Dana Farber agreed that seeking a quack doctor in Florida for a serious cancer with a 60% survival rate was a better idea than getting cancer treatment from the world class facilities in Boston.
The poison he’s talking about not wanting in his body is chemotherapy, which saved my mother’s life when she had pancreatic cancer (which has an 18% survival rate), along with millions of other people.
The next day he was superhero Mike again, announcing that he would not be feeling sorry for himself, but he would be removing “toxic” people from his life.
He said his primary care doctor for 17 year years told him to go to Florida to get chelation therapy, which just removes toxins from your body, but does nothing to get rid of the giant tumor and cancer cells that are supposedly killing him from the inside. There is no way any reputable doctor would ever suggest doing this. But most people probably don’t know that and assumed that he wouldn’t be lying about having cancer.
Mike’s posts were designed to get people to offer him help and support without asking for help and support. Next thing you know some kind hearted friends offered to start a GoFundMe for him and he raised over $16K in just a few days.
People always told him what a good guy he was. Even ask him.
It’s a weird position for Big Mike because he’s usually giving free food and money to poor people and the disabled, but now he found himself in a position where he needed money, through no fault of his own of course. For a guy who felt uncomfortable about begging for money online, he sure felt comfortable using pity to beg for money online.
He posted a video about how his cancer was suddenly upgraded by Dana Farber to stage 3, although it was “borderline thing.” He did the whole shtick about not crying anymore, being a fighter, and feeling awkward about the GoFundMe that he repeatedly plugged during the video. He repeatedly called out someone he “loved to death” for saying “who cares” when he told her he had cancer, which seems like something a person would say if they didn’t believe he had cancer. Of course much like the negative reviews, she was at fault, not him. He even blamed this unnamed woman for giving him cancer.
“If God ever made a stereotypical stubborn guinea, he made me and I don’t sit down for nothing. No more crying, no more calling my friends balling my eyes out. No more worrying about other people who don’t deserve it. Let them all drop dead I don’t care.”
“F***ing bitch, I’m worried about her and her family and they can’t even call me?”
Yea, why don’t you guys feel sorry for him? Give him attention and make him feel good! He’s a great person!
He promised to throw a party in a few months once he was cured of cancer and his financial troubles were over, which sounds like the kind of thing you would say if you planned on coming back to Massachusetts and saying that you were cancer free so that donors felt they got a return on their investment. It’s also a great way to get creditors off your back because who wants to collect money owed to them by a heroic fighting man with cancer?
At the 19:30 mark he reiterated what a great person he was (in case that wasn’t clear), while slamming the friend who said “who cares?”
“Me of all people? The guy that does for everybody. The guy that’s always helped everybody. The guy that’s always been there. The guy that picks up the pieces for every single person on the planet who needs help? I’m the guy who helps the world, OK? I’m the guy who puts it together. And guess what happens? That person says who cares. I thought that person loved me. Today’s the day we start fighting. Today’s the day we start throwing hands.”
How dare she!
Healthcare workers and cancer survivors he was friends with urged him not to do something so incredibly stupid like mess around with a serious stomach cancer. He dismissed them.
Yesterday he made a post lashing out at anyone who thought his story didn’t add up.
There is NO WAY primary care told him to seek holistic treatment of a deadly cancer, and chelation therapy is significantly cheaper than $20K at the many places it’s offered in Massachusetts. Oh, and he would also be living with his friend down there who is also a doctor.
I thought this was suspect so I messaged him on my personal Turtleboy account (Clarence Woods Emerson) and he blocked me, despite the fact that I just said “Hi Mike.” So I posted on his page and he predictably erased it.
I then messaged the woman who started the GoFundMe. She knew who I was and I told her my concerns. When she found out about the judgments against him she was surprised and demanded answers from Mike, but he just lied and said none of it was true. Mike also asked her to transfer all the money directly to him, instead of to the holistic doctor he was supposedly seeing in Florida. Totally not shady.
When she told Mike about her concerns he unblocked me and we began to chat. As someone who will probably die from cancer one day because everyone in my family gets cancer, I am deeply sympathetic to anyone who has to deal with it.
Mike wanted to make up lies about the judgments against him, but I was more concerned with the cancer GoFundMe. If he could name the doctor he was getting treatment from in Florida it would clear a lot of this up. He refused to do that and repeatedly stated that he was a well respected person.
He couldn’t spell the life saving chelation therapy treatment he was supposedly getting.
Mike did to me what he always did when customers left bad reviews – blamed me for being aggressive, insisted he had cancer with no evidence, and bragged about what a fighter he was.
Soon after that he threatened me with his army of lawyers, which he somehow can afford despite losing his business and needing a GoFundMe to live.
The woman who started the GoFundMe told him he needed to name who his doctor was or she would be refunding the money. This freaked him out because his gravy train was leaving.
The woman was disgusted by a man who she thought was a friend, who may be lying about having cancer. It was worse since her name was on it. But he blamed me for scaring her, instead of just telling her the name of the Florida holistic doctor.
He told her the doctor’s name was Steven Trisker, who is a nurse practitioner and doesn’t do holistic medicine.
Anyway, I published the blog, so if he really has cancer he’s free to sue me. For the record, I’m not saying he doesn’t have cancer. But if I had stomach cancer, I’d probably get the best treatment in the world in Boston, which is covered by insurance, instead of begging strangers to pay for my quack doctor in Florida. Either way, he’s trying to raise $20K, is refusing basic transparency, and is demanding that everyone blindly believe him because he’s such a respected member of the community. Personally, I think all these people who donated deserve an answer, but that’s just me.