Watch as truck crashes into Kingston, Ont. comic book store
The owner of a Kingston comic book store says he’s lucky to be alive, after a pick up truck driver lost control of his vehicle and smashed through his storefront window this week.
This is just the latest setback for SBT Comics and Games owner Mark Fardella, who has had to weather COVID-19 lockdown measures, and a break-in earlier this year that caused a financial hit to his business.
Surveillance footage provided by Fardella shows just before 10 a.m. Wednesday, he and a delivery driver chatting in the store at 749 Bayridge Dr. Just as the delivery driver, identified as Pat Arenburg, goes to leave, the truck smashes through the front window and door.
Fardella says seconds before the crash, he heard a noise coming from the parking lot.
"I kind of peeked out to see what was happening," says Fardella. "And just at the very last second I saw the truck so I turned and dove. I didn’t see Pat diving, he kind of landed right at my feet, and I just instantly assumed Pat was dead."
Kingston police confirm to CTV News Ottawa everyone, including the driver of the truck, was left without any major injuries.
"The place was filling with smoke and debris," says Fardella. "I couldn’t see but I heard people screaming outside. I know the hair salon right next door had just opened that day so there was a lot of people outside waiting to get their hair cut."
Kingston police say a man in his 60’s lost control of the vehicle, and confirm that no charges will be laid.
This is just the latest setback for the west end store, which was broken into on New Year's Eve, amid the ongoing lockdowns, with the thieves making off with thousands of dollars worth of goods.
"It’s very easy to be angry and to direct that energy somewhere when you can be mad at somebody," says Fardella of the last year. "But COVID wasn’t anybody’s fault. It’s easy to get mad at the truck driver but I don’t know what happened to him."
That has the community coming together to support him any way they can.
Jan Murphy, the owner of Gino’s Pizza in Amherstview, at 6 Speeder’s Blvd., heard about Fardella’s situation.
"He does so much in there. He has a safe space for kids, he’s always collecting donations for various causes," he explains.
Eager to reciprocate Fardella’s generosity, Murphy created the 'SBT Pizza', with sausage, bacon and tomato on top. With proceeds going to help the beloved comic book shop.
Murphy says dozens of orders have come in so far, with more all the time.
"We’ve had a lot of orders. I guess I’m surprised and I’m not, because of how great Mark is and all he’s done for charity and the community."
SBT Comics is once again open and operating for now out of the back door.
"You realize that this is what I love to do. I’ve wanted this store since I was a child," says Fardella. "So you press on and keep moving forward."