Middleburg Businessman Hopes to Buy Wood-Mode

KREAMER, Pa. -- It's been seven weeks since Wood-Mode closed its doors abruptly, leaving nearly 1,000 people without a job. One of those people was Brandon Barnhart of Port Trevorton. He worked at Wood-Mode for 20 years.

"I installed and inspected panels and frames, and I built appliance panels, too," Barnhart said.

Barnhart and many of his former coworkers are members of a Wood-Mode Facebook group. Recently, Middleburg businessman Bill French posted that he is working on a deal to buy and reopen Wood-Mode.

"To get a little bit of hope back, to slowly build this back up. It's really exciting for the whole area," Barnhart said.

French owns a modular home business in the Middleburg area. He tells Newswatch 16 he has an agreement in principle to buy Wood-Mode's assets. He did not say how many former employees he would hire back, but people are optimistic.

"I would (apply to come back.) I really like what I did," Barnhart said.

In addition to former employees, local businesses also hope Wood-Mode reopens.

Mckenzie Wagner works at Quick Shop. She says the store cut back on food after Wood-Mode closed.

"People would be standing outside the doors waiting for them to open and there's not much of that anymore," Wagner said.

Wagner's grandmother worked at Wood-Mode for more than 20 years, so she sympathizes with the former employees. Wagner hopes the plant reopens.

"It would be really good. We have a lot of people out looking for jobs. There are a lot that were close to retirement and they lost everything pretty much," Wagner said.

Bill French told former Wood-Mode employees on Facebook that he expects a sale agreement to be finalized within the month and to have the plant running a few weeks later.

1 Comment

Comments are closed.

Notice: you are using an outdated browser. Microsoft does not recommend using IE as your default browser. Some features on this website, like video and images, might not work properly. For the best experience, please upgrade your browser.