Country Patch set to re-open after August fire
A local business that has been serving customers for years was destroyed in August after a fire ravaged the building during lunch hour.
Here we are nearly a year later and the Country Patch restaurant in Athens, Tennessee will soon rise from the ashes.
"I just cried, because I hate to see somebody work so hard, and to see it go out like that," says Imogene Burns.
When current owners Debby and Jimmy Gunn took over almost two decades ago, 86 year old Burns was one of their first employees. Burns didn't ask for much in return. In fact she was paid at the time in rose bushes.
"I would take stuff like that instead of letting her pay me. It helped her and I love flowers," says Burns.
Burns was heartbroken when the Country Patch burned to the ground last August. But today we made Burns' day when we told her, Athens favorite restaurant plans to re-open its doors in just two weeks.
"Breakfast, lunch, supper, you can hear about the Country Patch all over the place," said Burns.
Back on the home front, owners Debby and Jimmy weren't available because they were home battling a minor case of heat exhaustion.
Shows how hard they've been working for towards their second grand opening. Crews have been working six to seven days a week for four months.
Athens native, and site supervisor Benny Goodman says, this job comes with a lot of pride.
"We're glad to be able to do it, people say, we saw you working on the restaurant, when you gonna be open? We're hungry, get it ready," said Goodman.
When that day comes Burns says, she'll be one of the first in line.
"Well it's just the number one place for anyone to go if they want a good meal," said Burns.