You might recall, from a previous post, that my brother’s workplace, B.D. Sports, was destroyed by the Alton fire on 10/01/11. At the time of that posting, the fire was still being battled by several fire departments, and had destroyed two businesses. When all that remained of the fire was ash, five businesses were destroyed.
When I stopped by a few days later, tears sprang to my eyes. To see such destruction was devastating—to know how it affected my brother, and his friend Jason, was heartbreaking.
Though Jason had requested quotes from an agent just a few days prior, B.D. Sports was without insurance, and he lost nearly everything when fire destroyed approximately $300,000 in equipment and inventory. The loss included all of the businesses records, as well as the clothes from their label, CageReady Fight Wear, which Darrel and Jason formed because they are both fight fans and know what fans and fighters like to wear.
<—Trophies, a small testament to the business, litter the sidewalk outside of the former B.D. Sports, which was destroyed by the fire. To see more photos of the damage caused by the fire, check out my Alton Fire album.
After the fire, Darrel called and asked if he and Jason could use our laser printer. Of course, I said yes, we would work out the logistics. I live on the opposite side of the mighty Mississippi River than they do, and generally only go to the Illinois side when I volunteer on Mondays. So, we hashed out a plan that I would pick him up after my volunteer shift ended, and bring him back home with me. He would use our printer to print the transparencies that he needed to screen print, and then I would take him back home. It would mean driving to Illinois twice in one day for me, but it was a small sacrifice, considering all they had lost.
On Monday, though, Darrel called me and told me that a colleague offered to allow B.D. Sports to use the printing press that he had in his basement, saying that if they needed it for six months, they were welcome. Having access to a printing press so quickly after the fire was a complete Godwink, so they decided it would be a better use of their time if they got a new printer and Darrel stayed on the Illinois side, trying to recover artwork from emails that had been sent to customers while also printing the transparencies. While I was a bit bummed that he wasn’t coming over (I was looking forward to feeding him dinner), I was ecstatic that a colleague stepped up and offered to share his equipment.
In the two weeks that have passed since the fire, Darrel and Jason have worked like mad to fulfill orders that had been placed before the fire. And because they are eager to rebuild, they are seeking new business.
Another colleague, from Sport Fighting League (SFL) , has also stepped up to help rebuild the dream by hosting a CageReady Fight Wear Benefit fight on November 4, 2011.
Proceeds from the fight, which will be at the Heart of St. Charles Banquet Center in St. Charles, Missouri, will help Jason and Darrel rebuild B.D. Sports and CageReady Fight Wear.
CageReady Fight Wear will be available at the benefit fight. If you are unable to attend the benefit fight night, and are interested in purchasing CageReady Fight Wear, contact B.D. Sports.
Tickets for the fight range from $20 to $40 and can be obtained by calling B.D. Sports at 618-462-5861 or 618-530-9630.
You can also contact B.D. Sports by email at firstname.lastname@example.org with inquiries or quote requests.