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June 12, 2003

Fire damages buildings on 500 block in Towanda

From: Towanda Daily Review, PA - Jun 12, 2003

TOWANDA -- A fire damaged a three-story building on Main Street in downtown Towanda Wednesday evening.

Lucille Stone of Canton said she was in her grandson's apartment around the corner on Bridge Street when the fire broke out.
"We heard glass breaking and people screaming and we saw flames coming up on the porch of the building (where the fire broke out)," Stone said.
Main Street was shut down to traffic for four hours near the building that caught on fire, which is located at 505 Main St.
Ed Miller, who lives in an apartment on the second and third floors of the building, singed his head and shoulder while fleeing from the fire.
"Thank God we got out!" Doreen Miller said in sign language, according to Ed Miller's translation. Doreen Miller, who also lives in the apartment, is deaf.
Dozens of people watched the firefighters battle the blaze, which broke out at 6:30 p.m.
Marilee Brown of Hornbrook said she heard firefighters yelling to residents of neighboring buildings to evacuate.
The fire caused "pretty extensive" damage to the second-floor portion of the Millers' apartment, Towanda Fire Capt. Erik Saxon said.
The third floor of the building was also damaged, although the damage was mostly caused by smoke and water, he said.
Fast Cash, a check-cashing service located on the first floor of the building, was not damaged, according to Dan Wheeler, the building superintendent. However, there was minor water damage to a hallway behind the Fast Cash office, he said.
The Towanda Florist shop, which is located next door at 501 Main St., was not damaged, according to owner David Bomboy.
However, a second-floor apartment above Towanda Florist did sustain smoke damage, Towanda Assistant Chief Bill Roof said.
The cause of the fire has not yet been determined, Towanda Fire Chief Bill Sheets said.
Nor is it known yet whether the fire started accidentally or whether it might have been set deliberately, Sheets said.
A state fire marshal has been called in to investigate the cause of the fire, Sheets said.

©Daily and Sunday Review 2003