Local tattoo shop donates safety supplies to first responders

GREEN BAY, Wis. (WBAY) -- Uncertainty is an understatement for business owners who have been forced to shut down to prevent the spread of COVID-19, but one local business owner is still finding a way to give back.

The owner of Artrageous Ink in downtown Green Bay, David Theeke, said he didn't get much notice before having to close down his shop Friday night.

"We got a little bit of a heads up Friday morning from the health department, but they didn’t know when we were going to be closed," said Theeke. 'Eventually we did find out at about 3 p.m. that we had until 5 p.m. to close. We had to turn away a bunch of clients yet on Friday and cancel the rest of the clients the rest of the week."
Theeke said it's unfortunate timing as this is usually one of the busiest times of year for his shop because it's tax return time.

"This is the first time in 25 years that our doors have been closed," said Theeke. "Typically you would see a full lobby so coming in here to do some paper work, with the heat off so it’s cold, is a little depressing but we will get through it."

Getting through it is the only way Theeke knows how to move forward right now.

"I don’t really have a choice. This is gonna hurt everybody," said Theeke. "Everyone has families. No one knows how long this is going to take or where their next check is going to come from and we all have families to feed, mortgages to pay, shops to keep running so we need to be here when we are told we can reopen."

Before Theeke locks his doors one last time for awhile, he is going to do his part to help others in need of safety supplies.

"I did see a post from the Green Bay Fire Department on Facebook saying they were in need of supplies," said Theeke. "I already had the box packed up, ready to go and on my way home I was going to drop off the supplies."

Theeke dropped off everything from surgical gloves, boxes of masks to disinfectant spray and paper towel.

"Our department, like others, are short on supply. We are trying to get cleaning material and masks for our everyday use, much less everything that is going on," said Lt. Todd Schadrie with the Green Bay Metro Fire Department. "All donations are helping us stay equipped to do our job efficiently and as clean as possible."

When Action 2 News asked Theeke why he doesn't just hold onto the safety supplies until he reopens, he said, "Cause there’s a need, I think it’s as simple as that."