Hurricane Matthew One Year Later: Lenoir County’s recovery continues

KINSTON, N.C. (WNCT) — Hurricane Matthew left historic damage throughout the East, including in Lenoir County off Highway 55.

Van Davis and his sister Casey Alphin own Grandma’s Attic, a florist shop and hair salon.

Last year, Matthew washed out the road connecting his business to customers.

“I could tell just how bad the road washout was,” said Davis. “Then in talking with crews from out of town that come in to do the assessments of the repair that needed to be done, they told me just how long it could be.”

It took eight months for the road to be fixed, but he is still waiting for relief.

“During that period of time of the road actually closed with detour signs, I easily lost half of my business,” said Van Jones. “A lot of people found another route to take, and I think they must still be taking it.”

The same is true for his other family business down the road, Vance’s Grill.

“It really destroyed the business as far as people being able to get here,” said Linda Walker, with the restaurant.

Linda Walker said their priority now is remaining afloat and “trying to keep the business open.”

So Davis has a message.

“We are open,” he said. “You can get to us.”

Davis said they are relying on loyal customers to return to their shop. He said despite the damage Matthew caused emotionally and financially, they will pull through.

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