YAZOO COUNTY, Miss. (WLBT) - Both Carl Fleming and his fiancée Patricia Wright were in the process of living out their dreams. For Fleming, it started 30 years ago.
“I loved to do fireworks, and as a little boy, I always spent a whole lot of money on fireworks, and I said one day I want to own a firework place,” he said. "For the next 20 years he would build up his own fireworks business, and he called it “Atomic Destruction Discount Fireworks.” He finally had it up and running the way he wanted it.
Wright said her dream started in 2004 when she opened her gift shop called “We Love You Gifts and Boutiques.” She was in the process of relocating the store into the area next to Fleming’s, and had an opening day planned. It was this Friday -- Valentine’s Day.
“It was a dream come true," she said. "That God had given me.”
But on Monday night, Wright got a call from Fleming about two hours after she left work. The building, he said, was full of water. There hadn’t been a drop in there when she left.
“Where am I going to start from? What am I going to do?” she said.
Neither shop had insurance because of the explosives, Fleming said. And after 25 years flood-free, he never thought he’d lose his shop to water.
“Nothing but a disaster here. I’m totally lost. So I’m going to have to start all over and that’s the tough part about it," he said. "So I’m just going to keep my hands in God’s hands and keep praying that I make it through.”
Both Fleming and Wright said their faith will be central in the recovery process, especially with two more days of damaging rain expected. And Fleming is even planning his comeback celebration.
“This fourth of July is going to be off the chain, I’m going to do a fireworks show that you don’t want to miss, and it’s going to last about an hour and a half and you’re welcome to come,” Fleming said. “I will bounce back.”