October 31, 2007 Edition

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Lathams sell after 34 years

Alex and Lynda Latham have sold their grocery store in Portia after 34 years in business.

J and P Flash Market of West Memphis bought the small store but plans few changes. The store's name will remain the same though gasoline and convenience food items will be added. The full line of grocery products will also stay. Another small change will be store hours. It will now open at 5 a.m. instead of 6.

"We appreciate all the customers we've had through the years," Latham said, adding that he and Lynda decided to sell because they are both nearing retirement age.

"We didn't want to sell to just anyone," Latham said. "We believe these people will operate the store in much the same way that we have."

Most of the store's 10 employees will remain on the payroll including Lynda Latham. She will, however cut her workweek down to 30-40 hours rather than the 50-60 hours she has been working.

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