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PLAINFIELD TOWNSHIP, Mich. (WOOD) - After more than 60 years in business, Plainfield Lumber & Hardware has closed in Grand Rapids.
Customers we talked to were shocked, but 24 Hour News 8 learned the company is facing several lawsuits, and has been in tax trouble.
"I pulled up and parked the car and walked to the door and there was a sign saying they were closed and thanks bye," said one customer.
She came to pick up merchandise that she had ordered and noticed the company's doors were locked for good. An owner of Plainfield Lumber & Hardware said that customer will be able to get her stuff, but others who are owed big money by the store may not.
A company representative told 24 Hour News 8 the economy during the past few years led to the decision to close the business.
"I wasn't shocked when I heard the news because I figured they were struggling," said Dianne Kelbel.
Kelbel is the oldest daughter of James Pleune, a former owner who started at the bottom, moving lumber in the yard. He sold his part of the business years ago, taking 201 shares of stock in the company with him for retirement. A lawsuit was filed on behalf of the family, claiming $700,000 is owed to them for the stocks. The family is suing Plainfield Lumber & Hardware because it was not paid.
"This was a huge amount of work he put a lot into it," said Kelbel. "There is anger in some way as far as you hate to see that go; you hate to see them hurting."
Her father passed away two years ago, but her mother is still alive and has yet to see the money. She has been living off a savings account.The family doesn't think it will ever see that money.
24 Hour News 8 found another lawsuit against the company for products that were purchased and then not paid.
Kent County property records show the company was late on its taxes last year.
The heaviest snow showers will track through midday.
Ten people have filed a class action suit against Mercantile Bank, alleging the bank discriminated against minority business owners.
A camera mounted on a tow truck caught an example of a common incident Tuesday: a vehicle sliding off the road.