LIVINGSTON, TX (KTRE) - Livingston residents say you never miss a good thing until it's gone. After abruptly closing for months for renovation and plumbing repairs, the Walmart in Livingston has announced plans to re-open its doors.
The Livingston community and former employees discussed how they feel about getting back in there.
Low prices, variety, and 24 hours of service every day, are luxuries Livingston residents lost in April when the store announced it would no longer be open for business due to plumbing issues.
"It caught a lot of people off guard," said Mike Hamilton, a Livingston resident.
"It came to the people in the town as a shocker," said Austin Sligher, a former employee.
Today, the repairs are near complete, but residents said the past months without the store have been difficult. Some of them chose to shop at one of the other two grocery stores.
"People were fighting over meats and stuff like that to the point where they didn't want to miss out on a meal," Sligher said.
Others chose to commute to the next nearest Walmarts in Huntsville, Cleveland, and Lufkin. These commutes ranged from 30 to 45 minutes.
"I'm tired of driving so far," said Shannon Milner, a Livingston resident.
Residents are delighted to hear that the low-priced mega store has began the hiring process.
"I'm excited; I can't wait," Milner said.
The spokesperson said Walmart plans to "rollback" by late October to early November.
"Some are grateful and some are wondering if it's going to be better or worse," Sligher said.
Sligher said the general attitude toward Walmart depends on how people looked at the shut down. He said some were very angry claiming they were done with Walmart, while others wouldn't mind going back to work there again.
"They were nice people. They gave us severance pay until we got on our feet. They just had to do what they had to do," Sligher said.
"Walmart is needed. Lower prices of course!" Hamilton said.