LOCAL NEWS

Los Hermanos Owner After Devastating Fire: ‘We’re Coming Back!’

Feb 13, 2019, 12:57 AM | Updated: 1:04 am

PROVO, Utah — The owners of a longtime Center Street-fixture Mexican restaurant said Tuesday they plan to make a comeback after fire gutted the building Monday night.

Lisa Witham said she was unsure whether Los Hermanos could eventually be rebuilt at the current location, 71 E. Center St., or whether the restaurant may move somewhere else.

Lisa Witham

“All of our children and we just… we prayed and we all thought, ‘we’re coming back,’” Witham said. “We have hope today. We cried yesterday and today we’re… we’re determined.”

Late Monday, flames tore through the restaurant and eventually burned through the roof, also displacing two other businesses which had offices upstairs.

Provo Fire and Rescue Capt. Dean York said the fire, which was believed to have started in the basement, was not currently considered suspicious.

The restaurant was closed Monday for a work crew to refinish the floor on the main level, York said.

What caused the fire remained unknown Tuesday, and York said it could be at least a couple days before investigators were able to get into the basement for a closer look.

Witham said at one point, the basement was under 5-feet of water and debris.

“The whole thing might collapse, too, because it burned through the floor and through the walls,” she said.

Los Hermanos

Witham said she hadn’t been allowed into the building yet and that the fate of a number of the restaurant’s longtime mementos remained uncertain.

Booths bearing the names of employees who met at Los Hermanos and married may have been lost in the fire.

“I’ve been texted last night and all day today, ‘do you think my booth is still there,’” Witham said.

She said she hoped the booths survived, but acknowledged, “Probably not.”

MORE: Owner, Longtime Customers Reflect On Loss Of Provo Restaurant

“It’s been our life,” Witham said. “We all became emotional. (The fire) was pouring out — pouring out the roof.”

Los Hermanos

Los Hermanos’ Lindon location continued to operate, but Witham underscored her determination to bring the Provo restaurant back somewhere.

“We don’t know, you know, where or when, but we’re going to go as fast as we can,” Witham told a worker. “Don’t quit on us!”

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Los Hermanos Owner After Devastating Fire: ‘We’re Coming Back!’