Alex Witt   |  September 14, 2013

NJ business owners reevaluate after blaze

Domenic Maruca of Seaside, New Jersey, speaks to MSNBC's Alex Witt about his pizza shop that was destroyed in the 10-alarm fire on the boardwalk.

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This content comes from Closed Captioning that was broadcast along with this program.

>>> developing now, investigators in new jersey trying to figure out what set off a ten-alarm fire that dress troyed at least 20 bizes and a sizable portion of the jersey boardwalk. officials say the fire spread from a frozen custard shop but it's uncertain how it all started. joining me from seaside park is dominick maruka who jones a pizza shop on the boardwalk. thank you for joining us. it will me what the state is of things at the shop that you own.

>> the shop i own is basically destroyed. it's going to be bulldozed like the rest of the block it's on. right now the clean-up and investigation is proceeding. we just have to wait. one day at a time and everything. and hopefully everything will work out well.

>> that's a wonderful positive attitude. i got to tell you, dominick , when we heard about this fire, we all just thought this cannot be. it can't be happening again. something devastating like this to your part of the country. tell me what it is about that area that is so special, why do people keep rebuilding? the legend, the lore of the area?

>> well, it's a very unique area. i grew up here. i summered here since i was 3 years old. my family's had a business here for 63 years. it's a beautiful area. a lot of memories. people came here generation after generation. it's a very unique place, seaside sid boardwalk. we love it here.

>> yeah. are you getting any word about the investigation where specifically either where this fire started or if there was anything suspicious about it?

>> no, i haven't heard anything anyway shape or form about the investigation. that's kind of very private anyway. i it wouldn't reach me anyway. the investigators will get to the cause of it and we'll all move forward.

>> you'll move forward and you're going to rebuild, i presume. dominick , you talk about a pizza shop of 63 years duration with your family.

>> that's correct yes.

>> i mean, this is your family's completely wrapped up in this. how much is your family's identity wrapped up in this pizza shop ?

>> the thing is, we've had four generations of customers. i've been here since i was a young man, i'm 54 years old. it's been my life. you know, it's something i always wanted to do. i want to continue to do. i'll rebuild, i'll be back bigger and better than ever. i'll be back. i have no doubt about that.

>> yeah, i know they've talked about being stronger than the storm. do you think that your colleagues there, the i don't remember co-owners of businesses along the boardwalk, are they also going to be bouncing back? do they share your indomitable spirit.

>> i'm sure they will do. everybody is doing their own thing right now trying to just scurry around and cover their bases. you know, it's been a shock. it happened so quickly. it's a close knit group. we all work together. common goal to get open again, get the town going again. i think a lot of people share the same thought process as i do, getting open, stick together.

>> dominick , i understand you're going to meet with governor chris christie of new jersey. what do you want to hear from him? what do you need to hear from him?

>> well, there's a meeting down at the city hall around 1:30 i believe for business owners. it's probably open to the public, too. governor has been great so far with sandy, he was great. he came down the other night when the place was on fire. and you know, he reassured us he'll do whatever he can. i have a lot of confidence in the governor and everybody on down working to make this happen because after sandy, everybody did a great job. they were overwhelmed. it's a shot in the stomach for us. but you know what? we'll be back. i think the governor will orchestrate everything very well. very confident with it.

>> dominick maruca, i have a lot of admiration for you under the circumstances. let us know when your shop reopens and we're going to many could and bring some cameras and make sure we give it full coverage and celebrate that day with you, okay? ing

>> i most certainly will. thank you very much.