An early morning fire brought a family business of more than 50 years to a halt. Macon-Bibb County Fire Chief Marvin Riggins says the call came in after 6:00 a.m. for a fire at Middle Georgia Freightliner, on Hawkinsville Road.
The Wood family opened the dealership back in 1967.
“I swept these floors before I turned wrenches, long before I turned wrenches, so it’s hard to see the devastation,” owner Heath Woods said.
Friday, after 51 years, the three-generation shop went up in flames.
The blaze caused extensive damage to the parts and service department where many of his more than 50 employees worked.
Wood says they all showed up ready to help with the long cleanup process.
“Let’s go back to work,” Wood said. “When I say my family, there’s 55 of us and we're all ready to go back to work. It won’t take us long -- we've got that bond.”
With a team like that behind them and faith in God, the shop will stay open.
“We will rebuild, we will go back to work, and all of us will be back in the same location quick, supporting our families,” Wood said. “That’s the only way you can look at it. It’s the only way you can look at something like this is to have that assurance.”
That assurance becomes insurance that the family business won't stop after three generations.
Wood says they will be back to work Monday at a friend’s shop until they can rebuild. He says the shop was covered by insurance.
The cause of the fire is still under investigation.