Army Navy store calls it quits - FOX 13 News

Army Navy store calls it quits

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TAMPA (FOX 13) -

It's been a Tampa landmark for generations.

"They've got a lot of the stuff, The helmets and a lot of memories in here" said Toby Gant, who retired from the U.S. Air Force at MacDill Air Force Base in 1963.

But after 75 years, the downtown Army Navy Surplus Market is closing its doors.

"My kids grew up in this store," Teresa Mosley said. "With the budget cuts in the school system we could come here and purchase things for less than $5 sometimes. He'll give us a break, and I'll come out with about $50 worth of merchandise and only pay about $20."

The store has sold everything from grenades and boots to swords, bayonets, even torpedoes.

"We had a cannon last year; someone found a cannon," said Awilda Lebron, who managed the store for 17 years. "One of those World War II cannons in the back."

She can't imagine getting a new job, but after a heart attack and bypass surgery, the store's owner says it's time to slow down.

"My doctor told me you're going to die or you're going to stop working, so I chose to live a little more," store owner Nick Potamitis said.

"Really I've been here so long. I'm going to miss it a little bit, but it's time to move forward to other things. He's getting tired. He's ready to retire. And everything must go," Lebron said.

So starting Thursday they're slashing prices on every last thing in the store.

"I'm sad that they're closing. I wish someone could purchase it and keep it open," Mosley said.

But the store's owner says he wants to sell it all, and when it's gone, he'll close the doors for good.

"It was a lot of things to remember, and it's a lot of people and different customers who are going to miss us," Lebron said.

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