MONTGOMERY, AL (WSFA) - Step inside Mason Lumber Company and you'll quickly see, it's a welcoming environment.
"Service with a smile," says Charlotte Mason.
Mason says it's always been that way--since the first day her husband, Buck Mason, opened the business 65 years ago, right after returning from World War II.
"In May of 1946, he opened his own lumber yard. It was situated in north Montgomery on a spur railroad track. It was one room," adds Mason.
But lately, business just hasn't been the same after a sudden stroke killed Buck five years ago.
The company continued doing business amidst the tragedy with reminders of Mason's dedication to quality service in plain view.
Now, signs spouting quality service and integrity hang above empty shelves and a barren lumber yard out back.
A reminder to Charlotte, every good thing must come to an end. She decided to close the business not because of financial troubles, but simply because she thought it was time.
"Nothing is forever. Nothing. Whether it's a business, or a person."
But it's no doubt difficult for the employees. Many of them have worked for the company more than 20 years.
"Oh my goodness, it's like home because I was here so many years. And the Masons were like parents to me. They were so kind and good," says 32 year employee, Cathy Englett.
So what does the future hold?
"That's a good question," says Charlotte Mason as she chuckles.
Her plans may be up in the air, but one thing is for sure--her husband's lumber legacy lives on. Perhaps because she'll never let it die.
"He worked hard. There were strong principles in his life. And they worked well for him."
The company's final day of business is January 31st.