WILMINGTON, NC (WECT) - Hurricane Florence destroyed a lot of memories for a lot of people, but one business is trying to restore those memories.
The storm has given Family Stone Works on Carolina Beach Road record business. Zachary Shafer, co-owner of the headstone memorial company, said the company has made $10-20,000 more than in 2018 than after previous hurricanes.
Shafer said Florence saturated the ground more than other hurricanes, causing monuments to be uprooted. The father-son business then has to redo the foundation and fix the stone.
In some cases, trees fell on monuments as well.
“Nobody wants to come up on people’s shortcomings, but at the same time, it’s also good because most of the time, when somebody buys a monument, they don’t know who to go to, who to talk to, so they reach out to me to do services,” Shafer said. “It has been an honor to help people to get things back in line as well."
Family Stone Works has repaired more than 200 stones since Florence from Wilmington to Lumberton to Pollocksville.
Co-owner Wayne Shafer said in his 30-plus years in the business, he has never seen a storm do this kind of business for his company.
Florence damaged some monuments so badly, the Shafers can’t fix them all.
“I probably, more than most people, take more pride in stone and how people are able to tell a story because the majority of people are just people living on this Earth,” Zachary said. “They’re not superstars or what have you, so that’s the way to tell their story. ... Customers that we have, they’re by extension family. Seeing the ones we’ve done new or old, it does affect you because this is my field, but this is also their legacy, their forever monument, so it does hurt to see things."
According to Zachary, if someone’s stone was damaged during the storm and they can’t afford to fix it, Family Stone Works will work with them on a price.