Backwoods customers voice praise, concern in wake of fire

Published 4:17 pm Tuesday, February 15, 2022

“Good food, good atmosphere and good Christian people who operated it,” said Lincoln County District 5 Supervisor Doug Falvey Tuesday about Backwoods Bayou and owners David and LaLinda Fortenberry.

The restaurant on Hwy. 550 W near the intersection of Jackson-Liberty Road burned in an early morning fire Tuesday that destroyed the business.

“I’m sorry for their loss,” Falvey said, adding he knows they will “go on.”

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“Their fried boudin balls were the best,” said Betsy Belk of Brookhaven.

“I always enjoyed their food and great atmosphere,” Lincoln County Sheriff Steve Rushing said.

Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Garrick Combs said he and his family loved going to Backwoods Bayou.

“The food and atmosphere and service were great,” he said. “Our thoughts and prayers are with all those affected and we hope for a speedy return to business.”

Brookhaven musician Blake Scafidel said when he and his wife Carrene ate there, “It was of course great. I hate hearing about their restaurant.”

Brookhavenite Ginny Misner said she was hoping to try the restaurant, but had not yet done so.

“I’m so sad for them,” Misner said. “Praying for peace during this time for them and comfort.”

The Friends Kitchen restaurant team issued the following statement:

“This morning we woke up to this sad news and we know that at this time there are no words that can help much. But we are sure with the help of our community you will rebuild this great dream called Backwoods Bayou and you will emerge victorious from this situation! God is with you.”

“I was deeply saddened this morning when I heard about this unfortunate incident. First there was Case Grocery at Hilltop and now Backwoods Bayou, both iconic establishments in the Loyd Star area, destroyed by fire,” former Lincoln County Schools Superintendent Mickey Myers.

“I loved dining at Backwoods Bayou … it was a gathering place of friends locally, the food was high quality, and Bro. David’s Justin Wilson-like comedy routine was a welcomed bonus!”

If you have a favorite memory or a word of support for the Fortenberry family or their employees, share it at