Some Spend Holiday On The Clock

For most folks, Independence Day was a day for a little fun and relaxation.  A day to rest up from weekend activities and to honor our country.  But not everyone got the chance to do that.

Many East Texans spent the day, on the job.

The sign outside the Lake Gladewater Store and Bait Shop reads "Closed Mondays".  Owner Virdell Skelton said there's a reason for that.

"Usually Monday's we're closed, but when it's a holiday, that's a busy day at the lake."

While everyone else spent the day having a good time, Virdell spent the day working.

"I'm kind of used to it.  I was a fireman and and EMT for 23 years and I was used to working on holidays so this is not much different."

Herchel Sloan said he doesn't mind either.  As a used car salesman, working holidays is the name of the game.

"It's been busy, busy today," he said  "The Car business is good when everybody else is off..  (customers) come in."

At fire station #5 in Longview, the guys are used to working holidays.

"We relax a little bit more on the holidays, we don't get out and do building inspections and pre fire plans and we cut back on our training on holidays, said firefighter Howard Harris.

But even they must make exceptions.

"My family minds, I could be at the lake with my kids today or something but we did that yesterday so we plan around it,"  Harris said.

For Barbara Smotherman, opening her nursery on holidays is a smart move.  It's one she says is not all profit driven.

"It's not really just making more money," she said  "It's so that we'll be here to, open for (customers).

Only government offices are required to close for the Independence Day holiday.  Most businesses we spoke with said they do better than normal on holidays.

Chris Gibson, reporting