Basil Thai Cooking owner Poky Prasikiew is back in business after suffering minor facial burns while attempting to extinguish a stove fire. Prasikiew and his wife, Nina, reopened the restaurant Nov. 6 — just days after the fire.
The couple say they feel overwhelmed by the support of their regular customers and the community at large.
"We are very touched and very grateful," Nina Prasikiew said, adding that customers have come by the restaurant in droves to eat or just to say "hello" and extend their good wishes.
Poky Prasikiew grew emotional as he read comments Patch readers left on an article reporting the fire.
"I'm going to cry," he said, misty-eyed.
The flames broke out at 11:31 a.m. on Nov. 2. By the time units from the Arcadia and Monrovia fire departments arrived, the fire had spread from the hood and duct system above the stove to the roof of the multi-story building. Grease built up in the duct system contributed to the fire's rapid spread, investigators say.
"[The fire] was so high and so big," Nina said. "Everyone was calling 9-1-1. The Fire Department was so nice."
Poky Prasikiew took the blame for the fire, saying he felt sorry for any trouble firefighters and others went to on his behalf.