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Princeville Store Reopening a Sign of Recovery

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PRINCEVILLE — The flooded town of Princeville took a major step toward its long road to recovery. The town's grocery store reopened its doors Monday for the first time since Hurricane Floyd.

Roger's Grocery is the only store within four miles of Princeville and is a huge symbol of hope for a town trying to rebuild.

Roger Barnes is the first Princeville business owner to reopen a business, raising the spirits of the community at the same time.

Some shelves remain empty, but deliveries are coming in. Gas pumps which have been empty for five months now offer customers fuel.

Barnes says he has come this far without any federal aid. He says he spent $100,000 of his own life savings.

"I'd rather pay for it and do it like I wanted to," says Barnes.

Barnes says what drove him to rebuild is that he wants to give the store to his son one day.

Before Floyd hit, 37 businesses were open in Princeville; 17 plan to rebuild.

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Len Besthoff, Reporter
Jim Young, Photographer
Michelle Singer, Web Editor

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