A Decatur businessman is out of $4,000 worth of equipment after thieves break into his storage garage.
Now the owner of Decatur Shoe Repair is worried about fulfilling the requests of his customers this holiday season.
A “Grinch” stealing his equipment is the last thing 82-year-old Jim Blackburn needed right now. The shoe repairman is the only one in Decatur and repairs are piling up.
Jim Blackburn has been in the shoe repair business for 68 years.
“I started working in a shoe shop, shining shoes, trying to get out of the cotton fields,” said Jim Blackburn.
At Jim’s Shoe and Leather Repair located at 209 Fourth Ave. S.E., you can also get items engraved.
“Christmas time and Thanksgiving are your busiest weeks, because people are constantly bringing in stuff they want done,” he explained.
Blackburn will have to turn away a lot of customers this holiday. Over the weekend he discovered $4,000 worth of equipment was stolen from his storage garage including his engraving machine.
“I was kind of disgusted, my wife is sick and that’s been weighing on me too, having to try and look after her and having to try and work,” Blackburn expressed.
It’s the second time in as many years the shoe repairman, has had equipment stolen from him. He wants the thieves to think about if the shoe were on the other foot.
“Pray and hope to God they have a change of habit, maybe some day they may think about they may be in business and I know they wouldn’t want people doing them like that,” he said.
Having to care for his sick wife and now this burglary has made him consider closing up shop.
“Just retire and let it go, but I’m not going to let the thieves run me away from something that I’ve been doing for 68 years,” Blackburn added.
Blackburn filed a police report Monday but says he forgives the thieves and hopes they don’t strike again.