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Monday, 19 August 2019 19:58

Firefighters Save Woman's Dunlap, TN, Business

Written by Hunter Hoagland, WRCB-TV

Fire crews are working to determine what caused an early morning fire that destroyed a business Sunday, Aug. 18.


It happened just before 2 a.m. central time on Rankin Avenue in Dunlap, TN.


An auto-body repair shop was fully engulfed when crews arrived.


Channel 3 spoke to one woman whose business was feet away from the shop.


"I was just thinking Lord please save my building," exclaimed Cindy Garner.


Garner says her business is about 12 feet from the scorched building.


"It was a hot furious fire. It was a mean fire," recalled Garner.


She said shortly after midnight, she got a scary phone call.


"I woke up at 1 o'clock in the morning to someone saying your office is engulfed in flames and I didn't know any different until I got here because the fire was so big," Garner told Channel 3.


Garner says when she arrived she saw flames 100 feet in the air.


"I knew that my neighbor here -- his was gone. It was just fully engulfed when I got here," said Garner.


She says the man whose business was next door was more than just her neighbor.


"He's also a classmate of mine when were in elementary school. So I feel very sorry for Mr. McWilliams. He has lost everything," Garner said.


The roof had completely collapsed by the time police arrived and several cars were on fire.


"They knew they had a big fire -- everyone pulled together as a team and they made it happen," Garner told Channel 3.


"They saved my business of 30 years and it would be hard to recreate a lot of stuff in that old building," said Garner.


No injuries were reported.


We thank WRCB-TV for reprint permission.



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