Lake Stevens game store owner holds on to hope despite losing everything

It’s a devastating loss for a Lake Stevens business already struggling due to COVID. They were hoping to welcome customers back inside their game store this month to hang out and play.

But Friday’s fire destroyed everything.

On Saturday, a Lake Stevens business owner looked around at the charred remains of what used to be his game store.

"To see it all in ruin and what has burned just looking through it, it’s devastating," employee Taylor Degolier said.

"Extremely shocking, nerve-wracking, it’s my life savings," owner Trent Barton said.

Barton says it took more than a decade to create the Man Over Board. 

"I fished in Alaska over 15 years to build this store," Barton said.

 "It’s so personal, we’ve worked so hard to make the store look beautiful," Degolier said.

Even before they lost everything to the fire, Man Over Board was struggling with COVID restrictions keeping people away from spending time inside playing board games.

 "It’s a game store people come and spend time here they don’t just walk in and walk out," Degolier said.

 Despite the overwhelming destruction, it’s not a matter of if they will reopen, it’s when.

"Everyone has been offering support it’s amazing," Degolier said.

Barton says he had 20 people show up the day of the fire to check in and friends taking time off work to help, not to mention a fundraiser set up by the community.

"The whole community started everything," Barton said.

Showing that in the worst of times, people can be at their best.

Barton says an electrical issue caused the fire. Barton and Degolier say they are grateful for the Lake Stevens firefighters who kept the blaze from spreading to other stores.