Cleary buys cab company

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Sureway cabs to be back on road Sunday

By Kirsten Stanley/The Ironton Tribune

Ironton councilman and business owner Bob Cleary has bought Sureway Cab Co., just days after the business was closed, leaving the community without the service it has come to depend on the past four decades.

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On Wednesday, Cleary and his partner — son Bobby Cleary — signed the paperwork to take over as owners of Sureway. Former owner Bob Griffith closed the company Sunday, citing several reasons. At 76, Griffith said he felt it was time to retire. High gas prices and operating expenses also contributed to his decision, Griffith said.

Sureway, which has six employees, will resume operations Sunday at 4 a.m. at its current location. But, he said, the business will move to B&C Tool and Party Rentals in the near future. Cleary is the owner of B&C, which rents cars and U-Haul trucks.

“We really thought this would be a good fit with what we already have here,” he said.

Although Cleary admits that buying the cab company is beneficial to him, he said, more than anything else, he is trying to help the community.

“I hate to see any business leave town, especially when it is a service-oriented business. We needed some kind of transportation desperately,” he said.

The former mayor said while he was in office he tried unsuccessfully to lure a bus system into the area because of overwhelming need for transportation, especially for senior citizens.

He said with the addition of the cab service, B&C may be able to expand its services and may be able to be open 24 hours a day, seven days a week for rentals of trucks and cars. Cleary said he also plans on beefing up the cab fleet with the purchase of a late model cab from New York City with expanded room and more bells and whistles than any of the cabs currently on the road.

Sureway is the lone cab company based in Ironton .

Others in Chesapeake, Crown City and Ashland, Ky., also provided service, but because they were out of the area, their prices per trip were more expensive than Sureway.