The Times West Virginian

Business

September 16, 2012

Kime Floral’s new owners working to ‘make Bill proud’

FAIRMONT — In July, Kime Floral and Fairmont lost a valuable member and owner of the business and the community.

William “Bill” Kime had owned the floral store since 1973.

After he passed away, he left the store to two employees, Ellen Ash and Dottie Conard. Ash has been working there for 18 years and Conard has been there for 21 years.

“Mr. Kime started on East Side,” Ash said. “Then in 1974 he moved to this present location.”

The store is located along Fairmont Avenue and Sixth Street. When the store opened in that location, Kime Floral shared the building with Sauro’s Dry Cleaning.

“He had the front of the store,” Ash said about the layout of the shared building. “As the years went along, Mr. Sauro went smaller and smaller and Bill just took over more of the store.”

Over the years, Ash and Conard have been slowly running the store themselves with Kime’s supervision. The two said it’s been a learning experience since Kime passed away and that nothing has changed.

“Every day is the same. Nothing changed — only who’s here changed,” Conard said.

“The past two years prior to his passing, he wasn’t in the store very much,” Ash said. “He would come in once a week, look around and say, ‘You guys are doing a good job’ or ‘You might want to do this’ or give us ideas.”

Every day, though, Kime would call the store between 10 and 10:30 a.m.

“We listened for those phone calls,” Ash said, smiling. “We knew if it was 10 o’clock it was Bill.”

Kime had an enormous impact on his employees. The owners said Kime never got angry with his workers and gave constructive criticism.

“Bill was our boss, and then he was our friend, and then he became our dad,” Ash said, holding back tears. “And that was Bill. He was extremely patient. I think that was one of his greatest virtues, and his love for people.”

They said Kime treated his customers with love and took time to help each one. He had a love for people, especially kids.

One tradition Kime had was giving women a red carnation and kids a daisy when they came into his store. This left a big impact on customers.

“Everybody liked Bill,” Conard said. “We have had more people come in and say they miss him. I have never heard one person that has said one bad thing about him.”

With new management, Kime Floral is still Kime Floral. Ash and Conard didn’t change a thing when they became owners because it’s the way Bill had it. They continue to give out carnations and daisies and give their customers one-on-one service.

Kime Floral employs five workers with two owners who each give something special to the store.

“Sometimes when one person doesn’t know the answer, we’ll say, ‘Hey, Dot, come here’ or ‘Hey, Patty, come here’ because it takes a combined effort,” Ash said.

When Ash and Conard took over they made sure each employee had a job and that the store stayed the way Kime would want it.

The atmosphere of the store is still loving and friendly, but one thing that is missing is Kime’s laugh and sense of humor.

“He liked to make people laugh. He liked to see people happy,” Ash said. “There were very, very few times that you saw him without a smile on his face.”

At the store you can find a picture of Bill Kime on what Ash and Conard call “Bill’s Wall.” The wall has his achievements and interests on it. Other things in the store are still Bill’s as well.

“This is still Bill’s phone and Bill’s table,” Ash said. “And we still keep his knife here. There may be a day where we put it away, but for now we leave it where he left it.”

“We just love our job very much,” Conard said. “We love Bill and we just want to make Bill proud.”

Email Emily Gallagher at egallagher@timeswv.com of follow her on Twitter @EGallagherTWV.

1
Text Only
Business
  • Your chocolate addiction is only going to get more expensive

    For nearly two years, cocoa prices have been on the rise. Finally, that's affecting the price you pay for a bar of chocolate - and there's reason to believe it's only the beginning.

    July 22, 2014

  • Wal-Mart to cut prices more aggressively in back-to-school push

    Wal-Mart Stores plans to cut prices more aggressively during this year's back-to-school season and will add inventory to its online store as the chain battles retailers for student spending.

    July 22, 2014

  • Morgantown’s housing expenses exceed national average

    The housing prices in Morgantown are driving the city’s cost of living above the national average, a new survey reports.
    John Deskins, director of the West Virginia University College of Business and Economics’ Bureau of Business and Economic Research (BBER), explained that the Council for Community and Economic Research (C2ER) orchestrates data collection in 288 cities across the country.

    July 20, 2014

  • JA Used Furniture-JB.jpg J.A. Used Furniture has valuable variety

    J.A. Used Furniture in Fairmont carries items that people need — all at low prices.
    Owner Ron Dray officially opened the doors of his new business, located at 10 Locust Ave., toward the end of December. He explained that the “J.A.” initials in the store’s name stand for the names of his two granddaughters, Jordan and Adriauna.

    July 20, 2014 1 Photo

  • Backbone Security, T&T Pump Co. among 37 state companies recognized

    Two Marion County companies were recently celebrated for their continued successes in exporting.
    Backbone Security and T&T Pump Co., both in Fairmont, were among the 37 West Virginia companies that Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin, Cabinet Secretary Keith Burdette, the West Virginia Development Office and the West Virginia Export Council recently acknowledged for expanding their business to new parts of the world. An awards presentation was held in Charleston on June 24.

    July 13, 2014

  • All Things Herbal-JB.jpg All Things Herbal health and wellness shop

    All Things Herbal Local Market is a one-stop, health and wellness shop.
    Owner Christa Blais officially opened her new business in downtown Fairmont at 327 Adams St., across from Veterans’ Square, on June 6 during Main Street Fairmont’s First Friday event.

    July 13, 2014 1 Photo

  • 3-D printing continuing to revolutionize manufacturing

    As 3-D printing is revolutionizing manufacturing, the Robert C. Byrd Institute for Advanced Flexible Manufacturing continues to stay at the forefront of this technology.
    RCBI has three Advanced Manufacturing Technology Centers, located in Bridgeport, Charleston and Huntington.

    July 6, 2014

  • Blackheart International -JB.jpg Blackheart International bringing high-quality services

    Blackheart International, a firearms manufacturer and provider of logistics and training solutions, is bringing high-quality services to the local community.
    At the beginning of April, the company moved from Philippi, where it had been located since 2005, to its new home in Fairmont.

    July 6, 2014 1 Photo

  • Americans falling out of love with shopping malls

    Abandoned malls are hot: The Dead Malls Enthusiasts Facebook group boasts almost 14,000 members; a Google search of "dead malls" produces 5.7 million results; and the desolate interiors of these unused retailing meccas keep making cameos in thrillers and horror films.

    July 3, 2014

  • State unemployment rises, but more actively seeking work

    Although the latest monthly statistics show a higher unemployment rate for the state, the good news is that more people are actively looking for work.
    The Labor Market Information unit of WorkForce West Virginia’s Research, Information and Analysis Division recently published the May 2014 labor force estimates for the state.

    June 29, 2014

Featured Ads
NDN Business
House Ads