Nightly News   |  September 13, 2013

First flood, now fire-- how one N.J. family plans to recover

One family with several generations of businesses on the Jersey shore wonders how it will rebuild yet again after a fire devastates the boardwalk. NBC’s Brian Williams reports.

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

>>> we are back here tonight in seaside heights . we are right here in front of the fire break that ended up saving much of what is left here. and one more time, you don't have to be from here to have a summertime memory from here. this has been a vacation spot for ages. nothing fancy here and that's what's great about it. it's all pretty basic. from the now destroyed funtown pier to the now destroyed carousel. it was a landmark over 50 years old. we caught up today with its owner bob stewart and his son kevin who were among those fighting the fire last night.

>> how we doing, fellas? look at this place. unbelievable. my arcade is on the other side of this building. i have been here all my life. i love this business. i used to kid my kids and say when i die, pop a couple boards up and slide me under the boardwalk. i love the boardwalk. a lot of kids took their first spin on that carousel.

>> i think i was on it starting at age 4. it's been a staple here.

>> yeah. you know, after the storm, so many people all summer long came and said, oh, the carousel. everybody loved it.

>> you were back and up and running --

>> i lost two-thirds of my building with the storm. i had a third left. i had that thing going. you know, right after labor day i thought, i've got this here. it's going to be all right. well, no more. as you can see , it's all gone. me and my kids were on the roof trying to slow it down. when i was there you could feel the heat coming off the buildings. i was here for the hurricane. i had to call my mother and tell her the arcade was gone. it really wasn't. we had to call her this time. it's really gone.

>> reporter: how much is one town supposed to take?

>> that's what i want to know, brian. it's very hard. i have been up here on the boardwalk 49 years. in this past year, i have seen devastation like i have never seen, you know? this is the love of my life . i never worked a day in my life because i worked on the boardwalk. if you love what you do you never work a day in your life. that's me. i love the boardwalk. it's been pretty much everything to us. my father, my mother. that's where they met. you know. where it all started. there's no giving up here, you know? bunch of fighters on the boardwalk. when something bad happens, there's no turning back. you know, you've got to make it happen.

>> we're jersey strong in seaside. we have to re build, put everything together like we did after sandy. you know, we can do this. we can do this.

>> reporter: tough place, tough guy. think of bob's situation. he both fought the fire and suffered such a great loss, all at the same time. as we said, one of these two tragedies we are following tonight. this and the natural disaster out west in colorado because our viewers often ask how they can help, we have put information on our website for you tonight. that