LOUISVILLE, Colo. (KDVR) — Hours after the Marshall Fire swept through Boulder County, Chuck Demarest returned home to find his out-building destroyed.
The chemist said the building was filled with all sorts of equipment, but the most prized possession was his FlackTek SpeedMixer.
“I didn’t know what to do,” he said. “It’s an expensive device, and the insurance company didn’t cover it. I thought it was a loss.”
FlackTek HQ steps in to help
Demarest took the charred remains to the FlackTek headquarters in Louisville, assuming the equipment was worthless. Matt Gross had other ideas and quickly got his team to work.
“I saw the old machine sitting in the back, and just had the idea, ‘Hey, why don’t we rebuild this?’ Right now, the community’s being rebuilt around us, and the concept was, let’s make this the phoenix machine,” he said.
Gross left the outside as is but replaced the entire inside of the machine, making it good as new.
“It was 20 times the work of just building a new machine,” Gross said, “but our team’s always up for that kind of a challenge.”
They invited Demarest to the facility and surprised him with it earlier this year, free of charge.
“I was touched,” Demarest said. “I was humbled and touched that they would do this for me.”
He said he’s glad they left the outside as is — a symbol of what the machine and the community went through.
“I love it,” he said. “This is what we went through, and like phoenix, we’re rising from the ashes.”