Howe2Run, a family-owned business that was devastated by an intentionally-set fire, is giving back to the Hinesville area with a special donation Tuesday, June 4, at 1 p.m. at United Way of the Coastal Empire, 301 Fairhope Lane, in Hinesville.
The long-time dream of owners Pam and Phillip Howe, Howe2Run, was severely damaged following a March 27 fire that was set in the store next to them, Jungle Jakes and Games. Local authorities later arrested seven people in connection with the fire that impacted Jungle Jakes and Gamers Only in a separate attempted arson and burglary on April 13.
“Our business had only been open for three weeks when the fire happened,” Pam Howe said. “The fire that closed our doors so quickly was a shock like no other and the devastation was horrible because our dream literally went up in smoke. My husband, Phillip, has five years of run specialty retail sales experience and I have been the runner in the family for the same amount of time. We decided last year to combine our strengths and make our dream of having our store a reality. On March 8, we had the ribbon cutting with the Liberty County Chamber of Commerce at our 103 South Main Street site. We were so excited to be a part of this community.”
Smoke damaged 100 percent of the store’s contents and inventory. The Hartford Insurance Company and the agents at Bernard Williams & Company made sure that the Howes’ financial losses were recovered.
“We were fortunate to have the love and concern of family, friends and the community and great insurance coverage with The Hartford and great support from our agency, Bernard Williams & Company. All of this support has meant so much to us and we felt the need to give back. Now our loss is another’s gain,” Howe said.
According to the Howes, The Hartford is allowing them to help the local community by donating the useable, yet unsellable, inventory items to charity.
“We approached the United Way and they welcomed the opportunity to receive these items,” Howe said.
On June 4, Howe2Run will donate 31 large boxes full of Run Specialty items such as Saucony, Mizuno, ON, Under Armour, Salomon, and Skechers Performance running shoes as well as New Balance and Under Armour apparel to include shorts, T-shirts and tank tops; and Balega and Feetures performance socks.
Phillip Howe told the Courier he and his wife are “retooling” to reopen their specialty shop, but at this time they have not yet determined if they will reopen in the current location or elsewhere in the community.