Fire, storm leave Iowa community without a grocery store
MALVERN, Iowa (WOWT) - An Iowa community was scrambling Thursday after its only grocery store was left in pieces, devastated first by a fire earlier this week, then further destroyed by Wednesday’s storm.
The impact of the double-disaster is hitting residents hard.
“It’s terrible. I don’t know any words...so sad,” employee Linda Michael said.
Mulholland’s in Malvern is a Mills County staple, much more than a brick-and-mortar store. For some, it’s a lifeline.
“Tom’s a great great man. I needed a job. I’m older. He gave me a job,” Michael said.
She has worked for the family-owned grocery store for five years. Now, less than two weeks before the holidays, she has zero income.
“I’m out of a job. Christmas won’t be Christmas.”
But Michaels said that’s the least of her concerns.
She had hopes the business could be salvaged after Monday’s fire, but disastrous winds tore apart what was left.
Now, she and the rest of the community are worried about the owner as he absorbs the blow during the busiest time of year.
“He’s got customers coming in every day for orders,” Michael said.
The bright spot through all of this: The Malvern community doesn’t seem to be sitting by idly. There’s been an outpouring of support, and a fund has already been set up to offer financial relief.
The owner shared an update on Facebook saying that while the future is unclear, he is working hard to find ways to continue supporting his employees.
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