Kokomo Tribune; Kokomo, Indiana

Local News

November 20, 2013

Picking up the pieces

As many as 30 businesses may have been destroyed by tornado

(Continued)

After more than 30 years on East Lincoln Road, Dan May said he is confident his law office will continue to operate in another location. Others in the Fairway Plaza, which May owns, might not be so lucky.

“It’s all cinder blocks,” he said. “The lives are more important. I feel sorry for the tenants who are losing their livelihood. I’m not sure if they’re going to be able to relocate as quickly as I can.”

Businesses throughout the city are dealing with everything from being completely leveled to replacing roofs and windows after Sunday’s storm. Others are simply waiting for the power to return before opening back up.

The Greater Kokomo Economic Development Alliance has provided four area businesses with spaces to relocate in the days following the tornado. CEO Chris Hamm said he’s setting them up in Inventrek, 700 E. Firmin St..

“We’re trying to provide resources for buildings that are on the ground,” he said. “We want to be whatever resource we can for them and the one thing we can offer is space they can claim as a home base as they go through the recovery process.”

Mid-Central Trophy is working to secure a location by the first of the year after the back of its building at 422 Arnold Court was completely wiped out, damaging much of the business’ equipment.

Co-owners Toni Weideman and Linda White are now looking at relocating permanently their business that creates everything from plaques and trophies to engravable jackets and hats after 16 years at their current location.

“That’s what makes me the most emotional — the help,” White said. “We have customers coming by to check on us. Our landlord has been very gracious in trying to help us any way that he can. Between that and the police department coming in and helping, it’s been awesome.”

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