Eviction added to list of tragedies for Kaneohe businessman

Bob Barr
Bob Barr

By Tim Sakahara - bio | email

KANEOHE (HawaiiNewsNow) - Bob Barr still has his loyal dog but the rest of his life is playing out like a sad country song.

Within the last two years he lost both his legs to diabetes.  Then his wife committed suicide in his muffler shop.  And today he was officially served with eviction papers.  He'll have to move all his belongings out by Sunday.

"I want to thank everybody for all the help, the kokua and of course the money helped," said Bob Barr, Barr's Muffler Shop Owner.

The money has stopped coming in.  In 2008 his rent went up while the economy went down.  He filed bankruptcy in April.  Now he's behind about $200,000 in total which also explains the eviction.

"It's been great. Hawaii's great. The aloha state is great and it's just great. I was really proud to be a service to the people and do as much as we could for them," said Barr.  "It's all relative. We still do the best we can, not only for ourselves but each other. Pass it on. The only way we're going to make it is for the help for each other. Standing together, I think that's the way we used to be, united we stand. It still counts."

He's been in Kaneohe on Kahuhipa Street 35 years.   He owns Barr's Muffler Shop and the Texas Smoked BBQ Restaurant which is right next door.  The old wagon on top of the restaurant is now beat up and the muffler man sculpture which stood in front of his shop will have to find a new home.

"Nothing I can really do about the condition of the world and economic conditions. We're all in bad shape, everybody.  You in good shape, maybe you can lend me $20 bucks? No seriously it's tough out there now." said Barr.

"It's sad. It's sad, another small business doesn't make it," said Melodie Aduja, Barr's Attorney.

Barr was born in the depression and is now a victim of the recession.  Still he remains positive.  He plans to keep doing metal sculptures with his last remaining employee Mike Mross.

He's also working on a retirement/78th birthday party but with the eviction he just needs to find a place to have it.

"Like I said everyone is invited," laughed Barr. "We'll all celebrate life together."

That's reason enough to sing a happy tune.

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