WESTLAKE DISTRICT (CBSLA.com)  —  A Christian bookstore was gutted Friday evening after a fire was reported in the building’s attic.

The fire destroyed the Ebenezer Book Store — on Alvarado on the corner of 8th Street — just before their busiest time of the year.

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KCAL9’s Greg Mills spoke to Jaime Flores, the store’s owner, who said the store was a “total loss.”

Books were burned or charred, many others were waterlogged. CD cases were melted.

He also spoke to some of the store’s longtime patrons.

The Luna family told Mills they visit the store several times a year.

“We always buy here, for church and everything,” said Melanie Luna.

The Flores family has owned the business for six years.

He told Mills that his wife Maurie who ran the business, literally 24-7.

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Watching the flames left her devastated, Flores said.

“She was crying. My kids were crying. It’s a family business. But we will be okay,” Flores said.

He said their faith will sustain them.

The family also has another bookstore, with the same name, in the Huntington Park area.

Flores said he will stay in the Westlake, Macarthur Park area as well.

“We want to stay in this neighborhood,” he said.

He said there were some salvageable items and they would return.

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