CALABASH, NC (WECT) – Fire crews responded to a fire that started in a popular strip mall early Monday morning.
Fire officials said the flames started in the roof of restaurant called 947 Bistro and Pub, formerly known as Nesbitt's Saloon.
The flames then spread to the other businesses in the strip mall.
Head Hunter Barber Shop, Reflections Stained Glass, Calabash Florist, and 947 Bistro and Pub were all impacted in the fire.
According to officials, the fire sparked around 12:15 a.m. Firefighters were able to control the flames, but all of the businesses in the strip mall on Carter Drive were destroyed.
The owners of those businesses are trying to figure out what to do next now that their livelihoods have been destroyed by the flames.
"The whole place was burning by the time I got here," said barber shop owner Marco Rooks. "Most of the roof had already caved in and the flames were pretty intense."
Rooks got the call around 12:45 am.
"You work hard to get something then you lose it in a matter of minutes," he said.
Rooks has worked in the shop for nearly six years and decided to buy it in November after the former owner retired.
Many customers came to the shop to talk about what was going on around town. They also came by to see his vintage barber shop equipment as well as the antique model planes he had hanging from the ceiling.
Rooks plans to rebuild sometime soon.
WECT.com was not able to reach the other owners, but did talk to some of the employees. They think the community will come together to help get everyone back on their feet.
"All the businesses here, we're all a real close family," said one employee. "We all know each other really well and work with each other really well and it's going to be hard."
The SBI is assisting in the investigation. Law enforcement officials said it is not uncommon to have multiple agencies investigating when you're dealing with a commercial loss of this size.
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