Brother Abdalla announced that he was closing Brother's on the Boulevard yesterday, and since that time he's been busy.
"The outpouring today is just unbelievable," Abdalla tells KATC today. "Acadiana has always supported us, and we've supported Acadiana."
Abdalla says he's closing the store he's operated on Johnston Street for 43 years this year; at the latest by Christmas Eve "if we make it that long."
It's not something he ever thought he'd do.
"I thought I would die and never retire from retail," he said. "But I had some major back surgery this year. My son and I are going to remodel this shopping center, from Brother's to Jason's Deli. So that's the next chapter in my life, working with my son, another challenge."
Abdalla said his family has been in retail for decades, starting with the Abdalla's department stores downtown and in the oil center, then Brother's on the Boulevard and in the Acadiana Mall.
"We're going to miss them as much as they're going to miss us," Abdalla said. "There are a lot of people coming in to say how happy they were with Brother's all these years. Some of them are just really emotional, and that makes us emotional, too.
Abdalla said a lot of people remember the things that Brother's has done to support the community. That's something you don't get with chains and big box stores, he said.
"They're not going to buy an ad in your yearbook," he said.
Bottom line, Abdalla said, is this:
"The biggest thing is, we want to thank Acadiana for supporting Brother's on the Boulevard for all these years. Forty-three years is a long time," he said.
The closure was announced by Abdalla via Facebook yesterday. Here's the post: