Looking at what's left of Handy Ace Hardware on Wednesday it was hard to miss the token of appreciation someone left - a poinsettia.
"People stopping by, like that poinsettia, it's really touching. You can't imagine, I mean we just show up to work every day," said Harold Smith, co-owner.
In more than 75 years of business in DeKalb County, the Smith family have never experienced what they are now. Friday night, a fire destroyed their family-owned Ace Hardware on Cowan Road in Tucker. They built and opened the location three years ago.
"A lot of blood, sweat and tears went into that," said Smith.
Smith was out of town when he got the call Friday night, just three days before the end of the year.
"I think we're still running on pure adrenaline so far," said Smith.
What has surprised him more than the destruction is the support from the community - the concerned emails, messages and even talks of fundraisers.
"That's just brick and mortar, sure that's a lot of inventory, but what makes our business is our employees. I mean that's what everyone knows and the community is concerned about, so that's pretty special in itself," said Smith.
If there was any doubt the Smiths would rebuild, the community erased it.
"Yes, we are planning to rebuild bottom line," said Smith.
Already a nearby Zumba facility is planning a fundraiser. The Greater Good Barbeque said they were planning a fundraiser for Jan. 10.
Copyright 2013 WGCL-TV (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.
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