Saundra's Furniture Owner: 'It's Been An Anchor For Years' - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Saundra's Furniture Owner: 'It's Been An Anchor For Years'

  • Also on KHQ.comMore>>

  • Massive Fire Destroys Colville Furniture Store

    Massive Fire Destroys Colville Furniture Store

    COLVILLE, Wash. - Firefighters and police have reopened the road in downtown Colville that was blocked due to efforts in fighting the devastating blaze at Saundra's Furniture and Design.
    >>
    COLVILLE, Wash. - Firefighters and police have reopened the road in downtown Colville that was blocked due to efforts in fighting the devastating blaze at Saundra's Furniture and Design. INSIDE>>>|SLIDESHOW|RAW INTERVIEW WITH OWNER OF STORE|VIDEO FROM THE SCENE>>

COLVILLE, Wash. – The Colville Police and Fire Departments were on scene Sunday working to determine the cause of a fire that completely destroyed a furniture store Saturday night. 

The Colville Police Chief said they were very cautious about who they sent inside Saundra's Furniture & Design because with the extensive fire damage, the walls were very unstable.

The damage is too extensive for repairs, so now store employees and the owner are trying to figure out where to go from here.

"I'm not sure," said Saundra Furniture and Design Store Owner, Saundra Wilma. "We are going to talk to an insurance company and see how we can support our employees while we re-build. That's the biggest thing is to figure out how to do that."

Saundra has owned the furniture store in downtown Colville for close to twenty years.

"I already cried on the way home," Saundra said. "It is just a lot of work that we've all put in, my employees are like family and they all asked me where do they report Monday, I don't know where they go."

She says everyone is devastated at the loss of the store that has been a fixture in town for the past fifty years.     

"It's another family member, the store is to everyone, as are all of my employees," Saundra said. "They're all family members, not that we're related, it just seems like it. We're one big family."

Saundra's daughter, Genevieve Wilma, took over as manager in January. She says she locked up the store around 6:00 p.m. and received the call about the fire just two hours later.  

"I saw the building orange all the way up as far as I could see and fire everywhere," Genevieve Wilma said. "People were on the street taking pictures just in amazement and coming up to me and giving me hugs."

The fire started shortly after 8:00 p.m. Saturday and quickly spread through the furniture store. The furniture inside is completely burned and even though the walls of the building are still standing, they will not be for much longer. Crews said the structure is so unstable they will have to knock it down and start completely from scratch.

The cause of the fire is still under investigation. However, rumors are circulating around town.

"I did talk to a reserve officer who said that someone across the street saw a white car drive off squealing and fast and thought they threw something at it," Saundra said. "That's the word on the street."

The police chief could not confirm whether or not the fire was arson. The investigation into the cause is still ongoing.

Although it will take time to repair, Saundra hopes to rebuild the store just as it was.

"This is the right place and Colville needs this store to be open here they really do," Saundra said. "It's really an anchor and it's been an anchor for years."

Therefore, in the meantime, business must go on.

"We need to get a phone to forward our calls to, we need to get an office, and we need to deliver furniture next week that's still in our warehouse thank goodness, but anything that was sold that's on the floor is gone," Saundra said. 

Saundra also says she has received an incredible amount of support from the community and from people on Facebook. She is just thankful no one was hurt in the fire. 

  • Most Popular StoriesMost Popular StoriesMore>>

  • Petition Calls for Changes to E-DUI Law

    Petition Calls for Changes to E-DUI Law

    Tuesday, July 25 2017 6:10 PM EDT2017-07-25 22:10:01 GMT

    Its only been in effect for a few days but some drivers in Washington are not happy with the new E-DUI law and want to make changes.

    >>

    Its only been in effect for a few days but some drivers in Washington are not happy with the new E-DUI law and want to make changes.

    >>
  • Coffee is life: Washington woman's hands-free drinking tip goes viral

    Coffee is life: Washington woman's hands-free drinking tip goes viral

    Monday, July 24 2017 7:30 PM EDT2017-07-24 23:30:43 GMT

    VANCOUVER, Wash. - With Washington's new distracted driving law in effect, holding a phone while behind the wheel could cost you. In addition to the cell phone crackdown, the law makes eating, drinking or other activities that could potentially take your hands off the wheel secondary offenses. That means if you run a stop sign while drinking a cup of coffee and get pulled over for running the stop sign, you could get a $99 fine for drinking that coffee.

    >>

    VANCOUVER, Wash. - With Washington's new distracted driving law in effect, holding a phone while behind the wheel could cost you. In addition to the cell phone crackdown, the law makes eating, drinking or other activities that could potentially take your hands off the wheel secondary offenses. That means if you run a stop sign while drinking a cup of coffee and get pulled over for running the stop sign, you could get a $99 fine for drinking that coffee.

    >>
  • Laurel fire north of Chattaroy triggers evacuations; contained at about 50 acres

    Laurel fire north of Chattaroy triggers evacuations; contained at about 50 acres

    Tuesday, July 25 2017 10:14 PM EDT2017-07-26 02:14:57 GMT

    CHATTAROY, Wash. - Update: 6:45 p.m.: Fire crews say the Laurel Fire is contained at approximately 50 acres Tuesday evening. About 50 homes in the vicinity of the fire were evacuated. Highway 2 will remain closed for the next few hours while crews continue to monitor the fire. A detour is in place.

    >>

    CHATTAROY, Wash. -  Update: 6:45 p.m.: Fire crews say the Laurel Fire is contained at approximately 50 acres Tuesday evening. About 50 homes in the vicinity of the fire were evacuated. Highway 2 will remain closed for the next few hours while crews continue to monitor the fire. A detour is in place.

    >>
HD DOPPLER 6i
/
  • Top Stories from KHQHomeMore>>

  • One woman won't be signing the petition to rewrite new DUI-E law

    One woman won't be signing the petition to rewrite new DUI-E law

    Wednesday, July 26 2017 2:09 AM EDT2017-07-26 06:09:08 GMT

    It’s been three days since Washington drivers have been told to be completely hands-free behind the wheel, and already thousands want to make changes. A petition on Change.org to rewrite the new DUI-E law has already gained more than 20,000 signatures.

    >>

    It’s been three days since Washington drivers have been told to be completely hands-free behind the wheel, and already thousands want to make changes. A petition on Change.org to rewrite the new DUI-E law has already gained more than 20,000 signatures.

    >>
  • Mad Minute stories from Tuesday, July 25th

    Mad Minute stories from Tuesday, July 25th

    Wednesday, July 26 2017 1:43 AM EDT2017-07-26 05:43:36 GMT
    Mad Minute for 12/30/16Mad Minute for 12/30/16

    Here are the extended versions of the KHQ Local News 11 at 11 Mad Minute stories from Tuesday, July 25th.

    >>

    Here are the extended versions of the KHQ Local News 11 at 11 Mad Minute stories from Tuesday, July 25th.

    >>
  • Authorities warn virtual kidnapping scams are on the rise

    Authorities warn virtual kidnapping scams are on the rise

    Tuesday, July 25 2017 11:17 PM EDT2017-07-26 03:17:02 GMT

    LOS ANGELES (AP) - Authorities are warning about a rise in virtual kidnappings - where con artists falsely claim to be holding victims' relatives for ransom. Los Angeles police and federal officials warned Tuesday that dozens of people have fallen prey to the scam in recent years and have paid out more than $100,000.

    >>

    LOS ANGELES (AP) - Authorities are warning about a rise in virtual kidnappings - where con artists falsely claim to be holding victims' relatives for ransom. Los Angeles police and federal officials warned Tuesday that dozens of people have fallen prey to the scam in recent years and have paid out more than $100,000.

    >>