Forest Auto Electric closes after 60 years of business

LAFAYETTE, La. (KLFY) - A 60-year-old business in Acadiana now has a for sale sign hanging from its door. Forest Auto Electric was the last business of its kind in Lafayette. 

On Simcoe Street, it was known as a very popular one-stop shop for home and vehicle parts. After 60 years of business, it looks more like a storage unit with no one willing or able to take it over. 

Eldis Romero, 80-years-old,  began working at Forest Auto Electric when he was just a college student. "We were the only one in the state really winding homages. Everybody else buys their own. Us, we wind our own homages," said Romero. 

The shop provided repairs for generators, starters, alternators, radios and more. "At one point, this shop.. years ago, they would actually take the starters and alternators off of cars," said one customer that goes by the name Mamou. 

He said he came here in the late '70s. He's now a good friend of Romero and helped him during the final hours of the business. "Nobody wants to get their hands dirty. They all won't office jobs. Nobody wants to be mechanically inclined," Mamou added. 

The lack of trained assistance isn't the only factor that led to Romero's retirement. "They started to come up with the electric cars now which eliminates almost every part we work on here," he said. 

The industry is changing. "Being the things way is now, more complicated. More technology," said Mamou. 

As the price tags go up on parts, Romero is sad to close the doors on those in need."Right now there's a lot of people that's low income and they need a place like this."

The shop is officially closed. The building is still up for sale. Anyone interested in purchasing it or utilizing it can call (337)-288-0954, or, (337)-235-6905

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