Dillsboro mayor and cobbler keeps fading profession alive

Years ago, actor Bill Murray woke up to the same Groundhog Day over and over in the movies.

Well, some steps are worth repeating, especially in your favorite shoes. But those beloved shoes may need some repairs.

In this week's Carolina Moment, photojournalist Matt Raisch introduces a cobbler in Sylva walking an increasingly rare path.

"A lot of the old-timers they worked, and even the most recent ones around here they worked, and they didn't have a son, a grandson, anyone that wanted to apprentice," cobbler Mike Fitzgerald told News 13. "So, when it came to retire they got too old. They just said, 'Well, I'm just gonna close the doors,' and they did. As far as I know we are the only bona fide shoe repair this side of Asheville."

"I'm very glad to be on board, you know," fellow cobbler Mark Parks said. "I am going to be the one that is going to take over the shop whenever Mike decides to retire. So, I feel like that's a pretty secure future."

If you need to get in touch with Mike Fitzgerald, you can also find him in his other job as the mayor of Dillsboro.

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