SALADO, Texas – Business owners are having to rebuild after a boutique burned to the ground.
Wild Angels Boutique on Main Street went up in flames around 4 a.m. Wednesday. Salado Creek Jewelers next door also has fire damage.
“We started these businesses with nothing. Everything we have, we started with a few hundred dollars in our pocket and a dream,” Chris Hammack said.
Hammack and his wife own Wild Angels, as well as a men’s boutique next door. They’ve owned Wild Angels for six years but had only been at the Main Street location for a year.
“This was the most beautiful building in Salado as far as I’m concerned. That’s what breaks our heart,” Hammack said. “My wife has put her heart and soul into this.”
The Salado Volunteer Fire Department says the cause is still under investigation.
“These dedicated individuals, they leave their families this morning, left the comfort and warmth of their beds and came out,” Chief Jim Franz said about the responding firefighters.
“Hats off to the fire department,” Hammack said. “We love our town. The outpour of love and support, just been amazing.”
Hammack says they’re going to temporarily move to a nearby building while they rebuild.
“You can burn down buildings, you can lose clothes, you can lose property, but you can’t crush dreams, and it’s been my wife’s dream forever. We’re not going to stop. We’re going to rebuild,” he said.
Next door on the other side, firefighters were able to keep the fire from completely burning Salado Creek Jewelers. The owner has been there for 14 years and has gone through a robbery, flooding, and now the fire.
“This is just one more step, I know I can prevail,” owner Creta Ferrin said.
She has damage from when the firefighters got in, plus smoke and water damage.
She says when she found out about the fire, “I’m thinking, ‘oh my God, am I going to be able to survive this because this is my biggest selling time of the year.'”
She says she still has a commitment to her customers.
“I have a goal to make sure everyone gets their stuff for Christmas,” Ferrin said.
The business owners on Main Street stay resilient, grateful no one was hurt.
“Even as bad as this is, we still have our home. We still have our family,” Hammack said. “We still have our health, we have God, we’ll be alright.”
While the cause of this business fire is still under investigation, Franz says as a general residential reminder as cold weather approaches, be mindful of space heaters. Keep things that can burn away from them. Keep an eye on burning candles as well.