FARMINGTON, Ark. (KFSM) — A Farmington dental office is celebrating its grand re-opening today (Jan. 27) after undergoing extensive renovations due to a fire and burglary.
On the outside river dental located on Main Street in Farmington looks the same, but on the inside, it’s been completely transformed.
“We were grateful that the building didn’t end up blowing up because we do have nitrous tanks, and so luckily, someone saw the fire and called it in at the right time,” Christy Kenaga, River Dental Regional Manager said.
It’s been about four months since the dentist’s office was burglarized and set on fire by suspected arsonist Jimmy Morell.
“Everything had to be gutted demolished, smoke damage on everything, everything had to be cleared out and be rebuilt," Kenaga said.
The building has been a dental practice for more than 30 years. Staff says that’s why they never considered starting over in a new location.
During renovations, patients were seen at the chain’s Fayetteville office.
“Everyone’s been so nice about it. We felt bad because we had to schedule and reschedule and try to make sure everyone’s still getting the treatment that they need," Andrew Duck, the dentist said.
Employees say everyone has been very supportive during the lengthy process.
"We kind of felt like we were in their way. Most of our patients live right around here, so they like not having to drive back as well so, we’re happy to be back, and they’re happy to be back," Duck said.
Now with new walls, floors, equipment, and paint, it’s back to business for River Dental.
When Morell was taken into custody, he admitted to police what he did and wrote a letter apologizing to owners for starting the fire.
He’s due back in court on February 21.