Raleigh institution damaged by tornado to be torn down

Earp's Seafood owner

May 4, 2011 3:44:22 PM PDT
Earp's Seafood, a Raleigh institution for decades, was so badly damaged by the April tornadoes that struck North Carolina that it will have to be torn down.

But David Salmon, who runs Earp's, says the business will be back.

"My father in law started this business 43 years ago. I think he had about $50 in his pocket when he started this business," he told ABC11 Wednesday.

Salmon says his mother-in-law Mary continued to run the business long after Mr. Earp's death - making it one of the top places in Raleigh to buy fish.

"I got people that come from Virginia about every two or three weeks, they want their fish," said Salmon. "Governor Moore, all the governors got their seafood here. The mayor of Raleigh, seafood here, sometimes we have celebrities come here like some of the heavyweight boxers come here."

But it'll be a while before they can come again. Earp's took a nasty hit from a twister in April.

"It took the roof off, and the inside, it's fell down now," Salmon explained. "We've removed just about everything in here. So, we should be demolishing the building. Probably by next week, we'll get rid of the building."

Salmon and his wife have been meeting with the city and insurance adjustors. They plan to rebuild and reopen. They say they hope to do it within three months.

"It's a landmark, and when you come in and out of Raleigh, this is the main thoroughfare, so you're going to see Earp's seafood, and we want to put it back," said Salmon.

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