COLUMBUS (WCMH) – Every day, businesses fall to the economic impacts of COVID-19, including Clintonville’s Traxler Printing. A business that was built from the ground up will soon be just a memory.
“I’ll get emotional and I’m sorry, it’s just that everyone here has been truly a family,” noted former employee Andi Pants.
Employees like Pants are saying their last goodbyes as the doors close for good at Traxler Printing in a few short days.
“It’s heartbreaking because the big corporations are doing just fine. I am still in disbelief. You know it’s 2020, right? Everything is so up and done and it took me a minute to really come to terms that it’s real and it really is ending so I’m sad but I get it,” explained Pants.
Founder and CEO of Traxler Printing Zachary Traxler said he saw it coming.
“We saw the start of COVID and the start of things shift before anyone else,” explained Traxler. “Seeing all of our clients shift from in-store retail to online-only retail. We had to make some decisions here — which departments to close down and which services we wouldn’t offer. Great, I have a pandemic to blame this on but at the end of the day, I still feel like I failed every single second and it kills me.”
Only a few weeks ago, while Traxler was in discussions with the bank and while they were coming up with a plan, he got in a car wreck.
“I have debilitating pain, I broke my ribs, I broke my nasal cavity,” he said.
A car accident that he says confirmed what he already knew was coming.
“I’ve spent a third of my life building this company, creating jobs for this company and for this community and having it all go away based on a pandemic was really difficult,” Traxler said.
Employees like Pants, who is still in disbelief, hope this isn’t a sign of what’s ahead for other businesses in the community.
“The businesses with a heart, like you said, the mom and pop shops, I’m getting goosebumps because they’re the ones getting hit from everything, so just support your local economy,” Pants said.
A few of Traxler’s employees have decided to create a small printing company called InkLine. They hope they’ll be able to use some of the equipment and start their business with clients that haven’t left.