This Memorial Day holds special meaning for the American legion post 135 on Bull street.
Post leaders say it’s a miracle they are able to observe the holiday at the post because a year ago the building was badly damaged in a fire.
“We were all just heartbroken, once we were able to see the damage it was really bad, it smoked up the whole building,” says post commander Tommy Fordham.
After almost a years worth of restoration, and renovation, the is back up to full operation. And on top of restoring the inner parts of the building from and water damage, legionnaires and diner owners at Betty Bombers had their hands full.
“It’s wonderful really wonderful to be able to be open,” Fordham says.
That same feeling shared by others affected by the fire like Seth Musler co-owner of Betty Bombers, the all American food joint that was hurt most by the fire.
“The restaurant business is kind of a tough business and a lot of folks cant survive something like this that happened to us so from the beginning we felt very lucky,” Musler says.
Set backs followed as the diner had to install a new grease tank and add more handicap access ramps to put the building up to city standards.
Musler says even though the road back was rough, giving up was not an option.
“We do it to honor our friends and landlords, the American legion who are all vets, so days like today are um kinda special to us for that reason.”
Now one year later business is booming.
“We’re still, doing better than we were before the fire and we couldn’t be happier,” Musler says.
And as business improves, after affects still linger for both Musler and Fordham.
“We had to upgrade and update you know a lot of things that we wouldn’t have normally,” says Fordham.
Even now with new handicap accessible spaces and the latest kitchen appliances, legion post 135 has plans for more improvements making the post even more handicap friendly.
“Right now a lot of them can’t even come in to the first floor because of the steps,” Fordham adds, “so we want to start this elevator fund once we get that going hopefully we can have us an elevator put in.”