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The Store remains open despite severe damage
By ANNETTE HARVISON
A popular convenience store and diner sustained heavy damage Thursday morning after a truck crashed through the front wall before daylight.
Timmy Leon Tanner, 38, of Boykin Creek Road, Richton, was traveling south on Indian Hill Road when he failed to stop at the stop sign, crossed Miss. 63 and crashed into the front wall of the The Store. Tanner’s truck hit a canopy post and ran over a gas pump before coming to a stop with its hood inside the building.
The incident occurred at about 5 a.m. Thursday morning before any employees arrived. Tanner did not sustain any injuries in the accident. Members of the Sand Hill Volunteer Fire Department responded to the scene and secured the area by shutting off the gas valve under the pumps, spraying fire foam where appropriate and running ventilation fans to clear gas fumes from inside the building.
Deputy Tommy Henderson, who also responded, said Tanner was cited for driving with a suspended license.
“Tanner said he fell asleep,” said Henderson. “He said he woke up as he was crossing the highway.”
Store owner Melissa Norris received a notification from the alarm service that the store alarm had been activated. Assuming the alarm was for a break- in at the store, owners were shocked to find a truck had set off the alarm instead. The structure was heavily damaged as cinder blocks were scattered well into the building and a large island counter was pushed out of place.
Store owners will talk with insurance adjusters and work to repair the damage as soon as possible. Meanwhile, The Store will remain open for business.
“We are glad no one was hurt,” said John Norris. “We ask our customers to work with us while we get everything back together. We thank our community for all the support.”