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Madison Heights seafood owner posts tearful plea to help small businesses

The video has thousands of views and continues to grab attention

Local business owner's tearful plea
Local business owner's tearful plea

AMHERST COUNTY, Va. – Many businesses are still struggling to reopen, and one local woman’s cry for help is gaining attention on social media.

Jeannie Shelton, owner of Bennie’s Seafood and Oyster House in Madison Heights, posted a tearful plea to Facebook.

The Struggle is real!!

Posted by Bennie's Seafood and Oyster House on Saturday, May 15, 2021

Shelton tells 10 News she can barely pay the bills and hasn’t paid herself in two months because of higher prices on seafood over the winter, and most people didn’t attend holiday parties, where there’d often be seafood.

She hopes that by drawing attention to the struggle, others will shop local.

“I mean, we are struggling, but I think it’s in a whole all small businesses are struggling; and that’s what hurts because we are the backbone to our communities,” said Shelton.

Her father started their seafood shop from the back of his pick-up truck 40 years ago.


About the Author:

Tim Harfmann joined the 10 News team in September 2020 and works at the station's Lynchburg bureau.