Monday, July 29, 2013

The fire at Stetson

Dan's cell phone rang at 3:51 a.m. on July 17.  I heard him say "Okay,  do you know where?  The children/preschool wing?  Okay, I'm on my way!"  I asked if we were broken in to.  He said "No, that was John.  He said there is a fire!"  We both thought it was a false alarm.  Dan put on shoes and off he went.  I rolled over to go back to sleep but thought about how sleepy he was so I called him as he drove to the church.  We had only been asleep for a little over 2 hours because Debra had gotten into town that night and we stayed up late visiting.  

As he pulled up the church, he said "Well, I don't see flames but I see a lot of flashing lights."  He still thought it was a false alarm.  He hung up and went to talk to the firemen.  He text me back soon saying it was the office complex and it was a real fire.  He said Channel 6 news was there.  I turned the TV on to see what they had to say.  He kept sending me texts with updates then asked if I could take shoes to him.  He only wore flip-flops and would need real shoes when he was let in the building.
Fortunately, Debra and Jessie were here so I sent her a text to let her know what was going on and I left for the church.  I pulled up to several fire trucks.  I got there around 5:15 a.m.  The fire was out and a cause had already been determined.  A surge protector caused an electrical fire in our workroom.  It quickly spread to Heather's office and the 4 offices off of her office.  Dr. Beck, Dan and Jon's offices were all spared from flames but had heavy smoke damage.  The entire Children's Wing suffered smoke damage. 

As I walked through the building, I noticed one particularly odd thing.  Heather's computer was melted.  Seriously, her monitor was totally melted.  But, the bowl of Hershey Kisses next to it were untouched.  Makes me wonder what those things are made of!!!

Here we are 3 weeks out and the entire office area is gutted.  Everything from Dan's office is gone.  Many things were trashed.  Servepro has packed everything else into a pod and will take boxes one at a time to ozone and clean.  If it can be preserved, then it is.  If not, then it is trashed.  His preaching Bibles were all in there.  He's preaching from a pew Bible.  His commentaries are all gone.  His files are gone.  The notes and things on his desk...gone.  It's an odd feeling to be without anything you normally rely on.  

It seems the rebuilding process will be at least 4-6 months.  Dan and Jon are working for 6 foot tables in the youth room in the meantime.  It's crazy...CRAZY!  

I went to lunch with Debra and Jessie that day.  Their choice...Firehouse Subs.  A little ironic, huh!?!

1 comment:

The White's said...

So sad for your church and especially for Bro. Dan and all the things that mean so much to him to be gone. So sad! Please let him know that we are praying for him and your church.


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