Longtime Tulsa flower shop gutted by blaze
BY KENDRICK MARSHALL World Staff Writer
Tuesday, November 20, 2012
11/20/12 at 5:31 AM
Even though a fire had significantly damaged Ted & Debbie's Flower & Garden, business hardly skipped a beat Monday.
Olivia Lee, who started working at the shop owned by her parents, Ted and Debbie Wilson, when she was 12, said many of the regular customers were completely unaware that a fire had taken place just hours earlier.
"Some people hadn't heard about it," Lee said. "Some people were wondering what the caution tape was doing here."
Firefighters were called about 6 p.m. Sunday to a blaze at the business at 3901 S. Harvard Ave., Fire Capt. Stan May said.
The cause of the fire will be listed as undetermined but not suspicious because several potential sources of ignition were found.
Electrical cords used for Christmas decorations were among the possible points of origin.
The fire at the longtime Tulsa flower shop caused about $155,000 in damage, according to estimates from the Tulsa Fire Marshal's Office.
The structure sustained about $80,000 in damage, and approximately $75,000 worth of goods inside the building were destroyed, May said.
Those who learned of the blaze stood in support of the Wilsons throughout the day.
A Starbucks near the flower shop offered free coffee, Lee said. Others stopped by to provide words of encouragement or give a hug.
Someone even started a Ted & Debbie's Facebook page so people could post messages of support to the family that has served the community for more than two decades.
"With just a phone call, we could trust them to deliver a beautiful creation to the hospital bedside of someone we loved," wrote Becky Wilson Grothe. "When we grieved the loss of a family member or friend, we called Ted and Debbie to help us express our love with a lovely and thoughtfully created arrangement."
But Lee expressed confidence in the shop's future.
"We will rebuild," she said. "Better than before."
Original Print Headline: Fire damage to flower shop significant
Kendrick Marshall 918-581-8386
At Ted & Debbie's Flower and Garden shop at 39th Street and Harvard Avenue on Monday, what wasn't burned had been heavily damaged by smoke and water in a fire Sunday. JOHN CLANTON / Tulsa World