Portland Goodwill store reopens 1 year after tornado

Posted at 12:01 PM, Jun 25, 2016
and last updated 2016-06-25 13:37:15-04

PORTLAND, Mich. — Almost exactly one year to the day, the Portland Goodwill store destroyed in the June 22, 2015 tornado officially reopened Saturday morning.

The store was one of the hardest hit buildings in the city, but no one was injured.

After extensive repairs and a hefty price tag, the store reopened new and improved.  Officials decided to build an employment center that provides job training and placement right inside the retail store.

Shoppers poured into the parking lot Saturday, many of them eager to get inside and look around. Among them were some of the people who had been trapped inside the Goodwill store when the storm hit.

Jeff Sandborn said he was trying on a business suit at the time and noticed the lights flickering. He said he started to see the building fall.

Jumping inside the fitting room, he placed himself behind the door, Sandborn said. It's a door that he now credits for helping to save his life.

During celebrations on Saturday, Sandborn was awarded that exact door and he says he's going to find a special place for it inside his shop at home.

The new and improved Goodwill store is now open to the public during normal business hours.  This comes just a few days after the city of Portland marked the one year anniversary since that tornado hit.