Massive Fire in Downtown Ellington

Massive Fire in Downtown Ellington
By: Holly Brantley
 
Ellington, MO - A devastating day for one Ellington business owner as fire destroys his ten year dream. Firefighters were called to Midwest Herb on main street around nine o'clock Monday morning. While Midwest Herb was gutted, businesses just inches away were somehow spared.
 
For an herb buyer,the fire could not have happened at a worse time. "This is the first day of spring," said Tom Ridenhower. "This is the day we really get started." Former mayor Tom Ridenhower watched his ten year old business go up in flames. "My forklift caught fire and it took over the building,"
Ridenhower said. He was inside when the fire began. "I heard a little boom. By the time I got around back there was smoke coming out."
 
Midwest Herb sat just a few feet from other buildings on Main Street, like the home and business of Cheryl Debleyzer. At first she though her home was on fire. "The police and firefighters said you can't go any farther," said Debleyzer. "But I had to go inside and get my puppy."
 
She got her puppy and her thrift store suffered no damage. But, there were some tense moments. "The way we are all located it could just be like a domino effect," said Debleyzer. Ridenhower lost everything and says if he rebuilds it won't be in the same location.
 
The fire marshall will inspect the rubble more in hopes of determining what caused the blaze.