By Paul Martino

PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — Crews are still trying to figure out how to recover a barge and restaurant that sunk to the bottom of the Monongahela River in Washington County.

The owners salvaged what they could Thursday from the kitchen of the California Boat Club. Refrigerators, coolers, pots and pans all went underwater in the Mon River.

“Trying to salvage what we can and go from there,” said Nancy Victoria, the owner of the club.

The boat club had been taking on water for some time, but pumps kept it afloat until Wednesday. That’s when it went down fast, and so did a lot of memories.

“We had a lot of happy times here, a lot of weddings here, graduations. My children worked here. They grew up here. My whole family worked here,” said Nancy.

Now, the husband and wife owners are trying to come up with a way to salvage the restaurant and barge. They’re floating several ideas.

“Just going to try and work through it and do the best we can do. Any solution we can come up with, we’re going to do. But we really don’t know right now,” said owner Lawrence Victoria.

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For the Victorias, it’s been a horrible month. They just buried Lawrence’s father and now this. But there is a silver lining.

“Everybody that I’ve ever known seems to be showing up and trying to help out in some fashion,” he said. “There’s not a whole lot that they can do at this point. But it’s been a wonderful experience knowing how many people are out there waiting to help.”

The Victorias say there are no hazardous materials on board that could leak into the river. They hope to get an estimate soon on what a barge with a crane would cost them to salvage the wreck.

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