Washington County VA

Overnight fire destroys Louie's pizzeria

GLADE SPRING, Va. - Fire crews are still trying to figure out what caused an overnight fire at Louie's pizzeria in Glade Spring.

This is the second time in the last two years that the restaurant has been forced to rebuild.

Empty tables and brick walls are all that are left of Louie's.

"I was in a lot of shock," said building owner Jim Copenhaver. "I mean to get that call,  to come down here and actually see it."

Copenhaver told us he's still in shock looking at the charred remains of the restaurant.

"Especially on Thanksgiving," he said.

"It's a pretty big loss," said chief Jarren Strong, with the Glade Spring Volunteer Fire Department.

Strong told us the fire department returned to Louie's on Thursday afternoon when smoke started rising from the kitchen again.

They worked all night to put it out, Strong said.They were called to the restaurant at 3:30 a.m. after an employee at the gas station next door saw the fire.

"When we got on scene, flames and smoke were showing," said Strong.

We're told there was a band playing inside only hours before.

One of the members of the fire department told us he drove past Louie's on Thursday night around midnight and saw it was packed inside.

Copenhaver told us he's thankful no one was there when the fire started but he said this is a familiar feeling. The restaurant was hit by the tornado two years ago.

"We've been through this once and we'll just have to see if there will be a second time," he said.    

Copenhaver told us they may need to tear the building down because the damage is so bad.

We tried to get in touch with restaurant owner Louie Moro and weren't able to but Copenhaver told us Moro is handling the loss well.

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