TRINITY, Ala. -- An early morning fire left a long-standing Trinity furniture store in ruins last week. And it also left current customers with questions about pending orders.
WHNT News 19 took action to find out how the store is working with customers despite the loss.
The fire at Pondarosa Furniture tore through everything, destroying the store's records. For this reason, it's been hard to get a hold of customers wondering about their stuff.
"Top to bottom, front to back. Everything's gone, no computers, our back up is gone. So we have absolutely no way to even know," said Sherry Bryant.
Pondarosa is family owned and operated. Bryant is the store manager. Her dad, Jack Nelson, started the business almost 52 years ago.
"My dad started out in just a 20 by 40 building down the road about a mile, and he just kept adding to it. In 1980 we moved down here to this building," she explained.
Last Tuesday, Bryant and her father had to watch his life's work go up in smoke. But, she said she wants to do everything she can to work with their customers.
"I've forwarded the store phone to my cell phone so if anyone has anything on layaway, or on order, or was waiting to get something delivered. If they haven't spoke with me yet just call that number," said Bryant.
The store number is 256-355-5630. She said they are setting something temporary up for customers to come to.
"We're planning on getting an office set up over here to the left of the building so hopefully we'll have that set up in the next few days. We'll just stay there as long as we have to," she said.
Bryant asks that customers leave their names and numbers so she can contact them once they get the temporary office space ready. If you plan on going there to discuss your orders, she said to make sure you have your order tickets with you.
"Just make sure to bring your ticket with you, and we'll just go from there, see what people want to do," she said.
She said they will reorder items for people, and figure out what else needs to be done. In the meantime, she is thankful to have understanding customers.
"Th community's been great, all of our customers are great. I appreciate their patience, it'll take a little patience on this," said Bryant.
Unfortunately, the future of the store is up in the air.
"We don't know if we'll rebuild here, [or] we'll open another store. We don't exactly know what we're going to do right now," she said.
She said the building is going to have to come down at some point, and that whole process will take at least a few months.
"Today's the first day actually that the State Fire Marshal has been here. So they're going to try and figure out what caused it, and what started it," said Bryant. The investigation is just starting, and no cause has been determined yet.
Five decades is a long time in a community. Bryant said that longevity has allowed them to have the best customers, and she wants to thank them for that.
"We may be down, but we ain't out yet," she said.