Nell Smith , Wife of store manager Ed Smith
“I think this store is an absolutely wonderful opportunity for the people of this Austin area. I think it has so much potential. Many people refer to it as a “big box.” I think it’s a big opportunity. All we have to do now is take advantage of this opportunity that has been placed before us. It’s been a struggle, but we’re here. Now let’s make it work for everyone.”

Todd Libbra , Illinois Regional General Manager, Wal-Mart
“I think it’s absolutely fantastic, not only from an economic development standpoint but from the support we’ve gotten from the community-Ald. Mitts, of course, and the pastors alliance and everybody really pulling together to make this thing happen. It is awesome.”

Louise Golden , Wal-Mart shopper
“I just love this new store. I’m so glad it’s on the West Side of Chicago, and I am so happy, and I think everybody is going to enjoy this store.”

Ruth Smith, Wal-Mart shopper
“I think it’s a wonderful thing that the store here is on our West Side. Our young people need to get off the street and get a job. People who were not working got a job and that is so beautiful.”

Jwa Cox, Electrician
“I guess it’s a good thing if they are giving out jobs for people who need them. People in the community need more jobs. I actually think it is taking a lot of business away from Austin for small businesses. I definitely think Cook Brothers probably is going to go out of business after this. They are around the corner, and it is a small warehouse store.”

Shenitha Leatherwood, Wal-Mart employee
“I hope everyone will come here and shop instead of going to other stores far away like in Northlake and Forest Park. They still are hiring a lot of new people and bringing a lot of jobs to the community. I live in the Austin community, so I’m closer to home. I used to travel to Melrose Park. I traveled back and forth for five years, and now I live within walking distance.”