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After 35 Years, Bulldozers To Raze Garland Business Hit By Tornado

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GARLAND (CBSDFW.COM) - A storage firm in Garland is one of many victims of last month's deadly tornadoes.

At GT Storage, customers' belongings are strewn around, in some cases without a roof or walls left to shield them. And soon what's left will be reduced to rubble.

"You've got a building that's 50 foot wide and 440 foot long, and there's nothing there," says John Aldridge, General Manager of GT Storage. "No beams, no tin, no roof, no sides. All the doors were gone."

Aldridge has been the General Manager there for 19 years. And he knows - they are keepers of stuff. Stuff that can mean memories.

"I just felt a lot of grief for a lot of customers. Lost a lot of pictures and other stuff," he says.

Albums and files, furniture and keepsakes - it's all jumbled together now. Renter David Threadgill, who lost some of his son's furniture.

"Couches and chairs and stuff. And there were boards that came through the ceiling - you can see where the holes are," Threadgill says.

He knows he was lucky.

"It's sad, but things happen," he says.

The bulldozers will be here by the end of the month. So Aldridge is asking his 250 customers to reclaim their belongings - what's left - before then. He says he'll remove items he thinks could be meaningful and will save them in large containers. Then, he says, after more than 35 years in business, they will start over.

"It's a lot of memories for me here," he says. "A lot of good customers, and I feel for them."

Aldridge's brother was the only one there when the tornado hit. He suffered a broken leg. The company has also had to hire four security guards 24 hours a day to prevent looting.

(©2016 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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