OLD FLAME: Fire Claims Johnston Vintage Store

Matt Wilson has a made a living off turning what may be junk to one person into treasure for another.

His store, Bisbee Wood and Wire off of Merle Hay Road in Johnston restores vintage or unwanted items and turns them into things that can be used or displayed around the house.

After a fire ignited shortly after 4 p.m. Friday evening, creativity won’t be enough to save all the unique items inside.

“This (globe) probably has no value at a retail standpoint. I will probably cut this globe in half and turn it into a lamp shade at this point,” said Wilson.

Wilson and a friend were preparing to close the store the store for the night when he heard a pop in a backroom.

He immediately saw the fire spreading into the attic.

“That’s when I knew there was no chance to put the fire out myself. I yelled to call 911 and we ran out the front door as quickly as we could,” Wilson told Channel 13 News.

Both men made it out safely, but donated items like an old chair and refrigerator were damaged.

Wilson says he immediately started thinking about his customers.

“We had a lot of people who liked coming up here and just spending time. We want to be able to do that again,” said Wilson.

It’s unlikely the building will be able to be salvaged.

Wilson hopes to stay in Johnston and continue building items his customers can’t get anywhere else.

“We felt like this was more than just a retail store,” said Wilson.

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