Snyder’s Supermarket works to rebound following loss of all its products due to fire

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KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- There’s not a thing to sell at Snyder’s Supermarket. The store unexpectedly closed down when a building next door on Independence Avenue erupted in flames on October 12. When the store shuttered, about $350,000 worth of groceries remained inside and rotted.

“Foul, rotten meat, rotten dairy products; they sat on the shelves for over two weeks and they were just disgusting,” said Janelle James, the general manager.

The food wasn't all that was ruined; everything inside the store had to go. The cleanup job was massive for company ServPro. The game plan was to start from the top and make their way to the bottom, reaching every corner of the store.

“It was a week of cleaning and a week before to get everything out,” said Greg Almeda with ServPro.

James said the product loss was a big hit for the family-owned store, but the most devastating part was the two firefighters who died saving others, Larry Leggio and John Mesh.

“Just the senseless act that another human being could do and not even take in the consideration of the other lives she put in jeopardy,” James said.

Though the store has been closed, James continues to pay her employees weekly. She says taking care of her own is the right thing to do. She was hoping to reopen the store by Thanksgiving, but now says  it will take some luck to be ready by Christmas.

The woman accused of starting the fatal fire, Thu Hong Nguyen, faces second-degree murder and arson charges, and is due back in court on November 12.