Customers help reopen Nocona restaurant

NOCONA, TX (KAUZ) - A popular Nocona restaurant is serving up food once again after shutting down from fire damage.

Bear's Den Diner caught fire two months ago after a trailer only feet away caught fire and heavy winds spread it to the restaurant.

Bear Weller, the owner, said the only reason his kitchen is open is because of his customers. The restaurant reopened last Friday and Weller said it was a joyous occasion for him and his customers.

"The looks on their face when they walked in and this place was totally redone basically from the ground up," Weller said.

Customers like, Jim Miller, volunteered in droves to rebuild it. Miller, a retired electrician, spent about a week repairing the electrical system for free.

"None of us even thought about of charging him for anything it was just volunteering it's what we do," Miller said.

More than 75 of Weller's friends donated time, supplies, money, and fixtures.

"It was fun," Annie Hudson said. "Everybody pitched in and did whatever needed to be done from the dirty jobs to the fun jobs."

"All I did was bring food in for lunch and I did that on numerous occasions," L.C. Durham said jokingly.

Total repairs were estimated around $25,000 dollars. Insurance paid for more than half of the damage and Weller's customers donated the rest.

"I wouldn't have reopened there would have been no way that I could have afforded to reopen," Weller said. "I put all of my savings just to get it open the first time."

Weller said he it is heart-warming to be accepted by the community. To learn more about Bear's Den Diner you can go here.