Neighboring businesses respond to fire surveillance footage

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MOBERLY - In the wake of a fire that decimated a long-standing business in Moberly's downtown area, and the release of video of a potential suspect in the blaze, neighboring business owners said they were optimistic about what the future holds for the downtown business district. 

"We're trying so hard to make downtown a really awesome place for people, and trying to keep it historic," said neighboring business owner Kady Randolph. "When someone does that to a building it kind of brings us down, but it's not going to. People are getting back up really fast."

Randolph is a co-owner of the Herb n' Market which is across the street from the building burned by the fire. When asked about her thoughts on the surveillance video recently released, Randolph made her thoughts clear.

"My reaction to the whole fire and the suspect, it's more annoying than anything just because we try so hard to have a tight-knit community, and working so hard on a small business is not an easy thing to do," said Randolph. "So for someone to deliberately try to burn down a building is awful and could've been a lot worse than what it was."

One of the other buildings damaged by the fire was Encore Moberly, owned by Doug and Julie Sharp. The couple's clothing store had severe smoke damage, but they were able to move into a space owned by their son directly across the street.

The Sharps say since the fire the community has gathered together and rallied around them. Their grand re-opening is set for Wednesday, Oct. 25.