Manchester restaurant reopens after driver crashes through it - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Manchester restaurant reopens after driver crashes through it

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MANCHESTER (KWWL) -

The Sunset Family Restaurant in Manchester is open for business after a van drove through the building earlier this month.

"I didn't even believe we were going to be open," said restaurant owner Penka Ismaili. "I thought it was going to be two to three weeks if not more."

Ismaili says he's still wrapping his head around what happened.  

Manchester Police are not filing any charges against the driver of the van. They say through their investigation, they have determined the crash was an accident. Police say the van's accelerator malfunctioned, forcing it to slam into the building on June 12th.  64-year-old Joseph Axline was driving a 2006 Chevrolet Equinox LT when it crashed into the front of the restaurant while he was parking.

Despite the van being totaled, no one was inured. Axline and a passenger escaped with just scratches. 

The restaurant opened Friday morning, and loyal customers packed house. 

"Sit down and cried was my first reaction," said customer Shirley Reed who says some weeks she finds herself dining at Sunset's everyday. 

"Honestly thanks to lot of people, a lot of customers that were here, without their help there's no way we would've been able to open this soon," said Ismaili. "We had four or five customers that were here every single day at 6:30 helping us to re-open."

Ismaili says they're still waiting to replace the front entrance window where the driver crashed, but in the meantime they're making do. 

"We just put that board because we wanted to be back open," said Ismaili. 

And so did their customers. 

"We come probably three or four times a week," said customer Bob Davis. "The food is excellent, the waitresses are friendly, large portions, and you can't beat the price."

"I just want to thank the community for all the support they've given us it's really been unbelievable," said Ismaili.

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The Sunset Family Restaurant will re-open today after a van drove through it earlier this month. 

Police are looking into what caused the van's accelerator to malfunction forcing it to slam into the building on June 12th. 

 64-year-old Joseph Axline was driving a 2006 Chevrolet Equinox LT when it crashed into the front of the restaurant while he was parking.

Despite the van being totaled, no one was inured. Axline and a passenger escaped with just scratches. 

Restaurant Owner Penka Ismaili says it happened about a half hour before they would typically get very busy for dinner. 

The crash caused quite a bit of damage to the building which has been closed since the accident for repairs. 

Today, people can once again enjoy the Sunset Family Restaurant. 

Ismaili tells KWWL, "The Sunset Family Restaurant is very thankful for the support of the community and are happy to get back to serving the community. Also a huge thanks goes out to all those who have helped us get re-opened so quickly. It would not have been possible without their help."

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