Hardware Store Burns to the Ground

Friday night blaze destroys Handy Ace Hardware on Cowan Road.

A sudden and devastating fire on Friday evening completely destroyed the two-story building that only recently became the new home of Handy Ace Hardware, a long-time Tucker mainstay.

No injuries have been reported, and the store had closed for the day an hour before the fire started.

Fire crews were called shortly after 7 p.m. to 4365 Cowan Road and were still battling the fierce blaze two hours later. Onlookers watched as the large structure slowly collapsed amid raging flames, billowing smoke and multiple explosions caused by ammunition and combustible gases.  

Jon Howell, a neighbor who lives in a nearby apartment complex, told Patch that propane tanks in front of the building had exploded. "The first thing I heard were three loud bangs. There were flames going up 50 feet in the air when I got here."

Leland Boyer, who was also watching, told Patch: "I saw the front of the store blow off. It was amazing! I hope nobody was in there. A bystander said he was the first one to call the cops because he saw a glow inside before he noticed it was a fire. He thinks a hot grill was brought back into the building but who knows for sure yet."

A couple who had been having dinner at Zaxby's up the street came to see what was going on. "I saw the roof collapse," said a somewhat shocked Mike Burkett.

The hardware store, originally located across the street in the shopping center that houses Sangria's and Inclusif Fitness, had in recent years moved into the new spot, itself a former bowling alley.  

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Kimberly. Please contact me. We would like to help you rebuild. Thank you! 678-525-8214. Kevin Simpson
Elizabeth January 03, 2013 at 08:47 PM
We say of the Handy Ace Hardware in Dacula (owned by Matthew Smith): If they don't have it, you don't need it. Our hearts and prayers go out to the Smith family and their employees.
Earl Mitchell January 09, 2013 at 02:03 AM
We are so sorry about the destruction and loss of your business and building due to fire. The Smith family has invested many years of time, money, and hard work into it and I cant imagine the loss all of you must feel. Your store was a destination for many including myself. I was in your store early December looking for an odd faucet valve. A major plumbing supply house didn’t have one like it but recommended “Handy Ace hardware in Tucker”. You certainly have an unmatched business reputation and brand. Please know that our thoughts and prayers are with the Smith Family and your employees. Earl Mitchell
Kevin Craig March 07, 2013 at 08:32 PM
I was glad to hear that the store was closed when the fire started. Growing up in Tucker for last 40 years, Handy Hardware and Matthews Cafe are two of the businesses I have supported for many years. Home Depot and Lowes may be bigger but Handy Hardware was the place to go for anything under the sun. The Smith men have been friends for years and I plan on being there for the grand reopening. Take Care, my friends. Kevin
steve dewig March 07, 2013 at 09:27 PM
who is old man Whitaker?


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