BILLINGS — Crazy Mary's Fish n' Chips is back open after being closed for over two months after the owner, Mary Frances Jackson, suffered a heart attack in April.
The future of her business was uncertain after her heart attack, but with the help of the community and her strong will, Mary is ready to get back to normal.
“I called my daughter. I was on the floor, I said, 'Baby girl, I think mama's having a heart attack,'" Mary said on Monday. ”Now I’m back and ready to rock and roll.”
Her opening day was filled with reuniting with regulars with a hug and smiling faces.
“I’m glad to see that she’s back in business and that she seems to be doing really well,” said Bob O'Brian, who has been enjoying Crazy Mary's for over two years and was the first in line for the reopening.
Mary said doctors told her the heart attack was from stress. Just six months before her heart attack, she said she was forced out of her original restaurant on the other side of Sixth Avenue North in her new food truck.
After eight days in the hospital and a stent in her heart, she was ready to start fighting for her life back.
“I just said that’s it, I got to get up. I couldn’t feed myself. I couldn’t drink," she said. "I have so much to look forward to. I was supposed to retire at 55, not die at 55.”
While Mary was hospitalized, she had no idea many people in the community were donating to her GoFundMe.
“We were upset. We donated to her GoFundMe page when it started up,” customer Timothy Bender said. "(We hope) she stays healthy and keeps us filled up with her good food.”
The GoFundMe had 287 donations, raising over $20,000.
“Honestly if it wasn’t for the community, I would have had to hock my house. And they saved me from that,” Mary said. “Now it’s a little bit more of a worry about keeping the community happy with me. I want to return the favor.”
Crazy Mary's will be open Monday, Wednesday and Friday from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. at 1321 Sixth Ave. N.