Fire guts 70-year-old grocery store in Hawkinsville

A 70-year-old Hawkinsville grocery store nearly burned to the ground Sunday morning, according to the Pulaski County Fire Department.

“Well that was my cutting table. That was a Hobart grinder right there. That's all melted,” said owner of Harris Kuntry Meats and Grocery, Chris Dollar.

Dollar says the store his grandpa built and he now owns caught on fire.

“I came across the bridge, and I could see the glow from two miles away and then when I turned and got here it was just chaos,” said Dollar. 

Hours later Pulaski County Fire Chief Leslie Sewell says they put the fire out leaving behind very little.

“I didn’t think there was a whole lot we were going to be able to do because it was really coming over the top of the building,” said Sewell.

Sewell says all that remains is debris and the front of the store.

“The community hates to see something like this to happen especially when it’s a local family that’s been owning the business so long,” said Sewell.

You could see how much the store means to the community.

Dozens of people like Reuben Roberts came out to show their support.

“It's a vital part of this area. People depend on it every day. You don’t stock up. You just get what you need that day,” said Roberts.

But Dollar says this is not the end.

“We'll rebuild it. It might look a little different, but we'll be back. There isn’t no if ands or buts about it,” said Dollar.

Dollar says he is just thankful no one was hurt.

Sewell says they have still not determined if the building is a total loss.

He says they are still investigating the cause of the fire.  

© 2017 WMAZ-TV


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