Metro Food Center workers scrambling to find jobs after building fire on Christmas Eve

Posted at 11:17 PM, Dec 24, 2019
and last updated 2019-12-24 23:20:50-05

DETROIT (WXYZ) — A two-alarm fire heavily damaged a grocery store that has been a landmark on Detroit's west side for over 20 years. The fire broke out around 12:40 p.m. while shoppers were in the store located at Warren and Gilbert.

Officials say there are no injuries to report at this time.

Angelo Walker works in the meat department. He's been employed at the store for nearly 20 years.

"This is terrible, Walker said, "It's just all bad."

Walker said he and his colleagues were supposed to be paid on Christmas Eve, including a bonus.

"We have to wait till probably Thursday or Friday," employee Rico Baker said.

Baker added that he's worked a the store for 20 years.

"A landmark (is) gone," Baker said at the scene. "Why on Christmas Eve?"

Approximately 45 firefighters responded to the scene. Multiple ladder trucks were used in a defense posture to put out the flames. The cause of the fire is under investigation.

Some regulars at the store are concerned about finding a nearby location to purchase fresh produce and meats.

"I am sad," said shopper Larry Bell. "It is the only one we have in the whole neighborhood. It makes you want to cry."

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