Restaurant employee, owner trying to deal after fire destroys popular business

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by Claudia Coffey

WHAS11.com

Posted on February 21, 2014 at 5:20 AM

Updated Friday, Feb 21 at 6:17 PM

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WHAS11) -- A beloved neighborhood restaurant goes up in flames.

A fire completely destroyed Mexico Tipico in the 6500 of Dixie Highway.

It happened over night and has left dozens of employees unemployed but the owner vows to rebuild.

"I really like this work. I don't know what I am going to do now. This is really sad," Janet Bereira, a Mexico Tipico employee, said.

Bereira is one of dozens of employees of Mexico Tipico that are in complete shock on Friday, Feb. 21.

She worked here for five years and the future is now uncertain

"A lot of those people that work here they don’t know what is going to happen. They have family, they have kids and they need work," Bereira said.

The fire started shortly before midnight. The massive blaze required two departments and more than 45 firefighters.  In the end it was a complete loss.

"It was bad. In like thirty minutes it burned down," Gerado Jaureggi, the owner, said.

Neighboring businesses are also feeling the loss. Roger French the manager of a mattress business, called Sleep Outfitters, next door said this restaurant has been here for more than 25 years and was a good neighbor.

"It was a very popular restaurant. Friday and Saturdays you can't hardly get into the parking lot," French said.

Fire officials say while a cause is still not known, they do have some clues.

"You look at the hood system in a building like that. It's a sprinkled building. Sprinklers would have normally extinguished this fire and we think the fire may have been above where the sprinklers were," Henry Ott, with the Arson Squad, said.
 

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