NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — The owner of Pride & Glory Tattoo Parlor couldn't help but feel a pit in his stomach when he heard the news Christmas morning.
Pete Gibson's business was one of those unfortunate enough to be caught directly in the RV blast that rocked Second Avenue. His business was annihilated in the fire and concussion force of the explosion. Gibson said the RV was right across the street.
"It was a nightmare. It was a nightmare," said Gibson. He was on the scene as soon as he could make it driving from his home, east of Nashville.
"I think about it every day about how there was really no closure on why. No closure on any big details," said Gibson.
Despite the despair wrought in December, Gibson said he and other owners are trying to reopen their businesses. He said the new location for Pride & Glory Tattoo could reopen in just weeks. He was able to keep the business downtown. The new location is at 510 Rep. John Lewis Way, the old Fifth Avenue South.
"Everybody is in the process of kind of trying to find a new location and get back on their feet and their ball turning a little bit," he said.
Gibson said the downtown area is a bit like a family. In fact, another business owner whose business was destroyed recovered possibly the only unscathed piece of the former Second Avenue tattoo shop. A tattoo flash sheet, a simple piece of paper, survived the blast with no visible damage. It shows several tattoo styles from the Sailor Jerry brand.
Perhaps it's a sign for better times to come.
"We're all trying to do it as a community and being part of Nashville. We're trying to bounce back and stay strong and look forward to new beginnings," said Gibson.
Gibson didn't start the rebuilding process alone. He had help from friends and family and also a GoFundMe page that raised 50 grand.
He's planning a reopening party on April 17.