(MEDORA) – Downs Garage, which has been in business for more than 53 years, was destroyed by a fire today.
The business, located in Medora, is owned by Linda and Rick Down. Both of their sons also work at the garage, according to neighbors.
The fire was reported at 11:44 a.m. at 18 North George Street in Medora.
“My husband was eating lunch when we heard a loud explosion. My husband then ran over to check on Jason Down as we knew they were working in the garage,” stated Debi Wayman, who lives across the street from the business. “I heard another explosion after my husband went over there, so I sent someone to go and check on my husband.”
No one was injured while fighting the blaze.
“I live next door and was sleeping when I heard a loud explosion. I went over to check on the fire. My home also suffered damage from the fire but mostly smoke damage,” said Carr Township Fire Protection District Public Information Officer Logan Miser. “At this time we do not know what started the blaze.”
The Down’s went inside to eat lunch when they heard the explosion and then saw the smoke. The Down’s home also suffered fire damage from the blaze.
“Winds hampered our efforts and we requested several fire departments to help us get the fire under control,” stated Miser.
The Carr Township Fire Department was joined by Brownstown Fire Department, Driftwood Twp. Fire Department, Hamilton Twp., Vernon Twp. in Jackson County as well as the Jefferson Twp. Fire Department in Washington County.
The Medora Police Department, Brownstown Police Department, Jackson County Sheriff’s Department, and Jackson County EMS assisted in traffic control while firefighters battled the blaze.
“The Down’s were very community-minded individuals. Rick has faced several health issues over the years. He is a cancer survivor and recently had by-pass heart surgery,” stated Debi Wayman, who has been the Down’s neighbor for more than 41 years.
“One year someone canceled out on a car show. Linda was able to put the car show together on a Saturday and was with her husband that Monday at the hospital having surgery. This is the type of people the Down’s are,” Wayman concluded.
A corvette that was inside the garage was destroyed in addition to the two homes that were damaged by fire.
The Down’s were seen trying to salvage what they could from their home.
“Right now there is a lot of smoke damage in the home,” said Stacy Down.
The cause into what caused the blaze remains under investigation.