50 people in Hannibal will be out of a job by the end of the month when a longtime grocery store chain closes its doors. Kroger is yet another business struggling to turn a profit in this economy, leaving more people out of work.
Kroger's has been a part of the Hannibal Community for over 40 years. And many customers going into the store Thursday say they are sad to see it go."
"I was shocked when I heard the news," said longtime customer Karen Heskett.
She heard the news this morning like everyone else. She's been coming to Kroger since 1994, and she said now, she'll go the extra mile to get groceries.
"Probably Hy-Vee in Quincy. Well I don't like some of the things I've seen and I like Hy-Vee's meat. I always got my meat at Kroger's or HyVee, so I'll probably just go up there for my meat," she said.
Kroger officials said closing the store was an economic decision, and that's it's simply struggling to turn a profit.
It was just six months ago that Blockbuster, another business in the Huck Finn SHopping Center, was forced to close its doors. And it's still empty. But McKenzie Disselhorst, with the Hannibal Chamber of Commerce said the city doesn't want Kroger to sit vacant for long.
"Getting a store or some type of business to fill the location that Kroger is leaving will be a priority. As we've discussed, not only for the employee's who are affected and giving them another opportunity for employment, but to minimize the impact to the other retailers and businesses that are in the Huck Finn Shopping Center," said Disselhorst.
Heskett said the writing's already on the wall inside the Hannibal Kroger. The closing date is near.
"The meat trays are almost clean. You know they're not used to it. It's like I came from San Francisco, it's like how it looked after we had an earthquake. You know hurry and get your food."
While workers got the news Thursday, Kroger will stay open until late October.
Kroger is also closing its store in Louisiana, Missouri, which is the city's only supermarket.
Store employees there will have the option to transfer to the Kroger's store in Troy.
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