Fire destroys popular restaurant in Brooksville. - WFLA News Channel 8

Owners plan to rebuild popular Brooksville restaurant destroyed by fire

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Fire damages Brooksville restaurant. Photo courtesy Hernando Co. Fire Rescue Fire damages Brooksville restaurant. Photo courtesy Hernando Co. Fire Rescue
BROOKSVILLE, FL (WFLA) -

"Big red glow in the sky from where we live and we just said 'Oh sweet Jesus what in the world?' "

That is how Donna Giarratana described what she saw while heading to her restaurant to check on a fire alarm.

According to Hernando County Fire Rescue, the fire started sometime around 3 a.m. Friday.

Despite witnessing the total loss of their business, owners Joe and Donna Giarratana say they will go on.

"We've been here for 33 years and we've had wonderful blessing all the time and this will turn into a blessing somehow," Donna Giarratana said.

Joe Giarratana said he is more concerned about his employees future than he is about the burned-out shell of his restaurant.

"I just hope we open as quick as we can because we really have lots of employees to keep employed," Joe Giarratana said.

Several customers say they were shocked when they heard about the fire. Many of them paid a visit to the couple to offer their sympathy.

"Joe has been a terrific community member because whenever anybody has been down and out for whatever reason, Joe has always been there to hold some kind of function for them to help them," said long time customer Barbara Currin.

The State Fire Marshal's Office is investigating the fire and say they should have an answer to what caused it within the next two weeks.

Joe Giarratana says he will rebuild bigger and better than before.

"A lot of memories but you know what, they go up in smoke and there is a new memories come, new chapter opens up. So I am not discouraged a bit," Giarratana said.


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