Fire damages downtown Greencastle bldg.

7 buildings sustain smoke, water, fire damage

GREENCASTLE, Ind. - A stubborn fire damaged more than half a dozen businesses in downtown Greencastle Friday morning.

The fire was reported just before 7:30 a.m. in a building that houses Wilson's Photography off the courthouse square.

IMAGES: Greencastle building catches fire

The business owners, Lester and Judy Wilson, live in the apartments above the building, RTV6's Julie Pursley reported.

The Wilson family was up getting ready for the day when the fire sparked.

"My daughter came in and told my wife the deck is on fire on the building next door," said Lester Wilson. "She came in to tell me... and said we have to get out, the deck is on fire."

The Wilsons and their children escaped the fire unharmed.

Meanwhile, the fire spread to neighboring buildings. In all, more than half a dozen buildings were damaged. Wilson's Photography, a pawn shop and a dentist office sustained the worst damage.

Dr. Perry Wainman had patients and employees in his office when they spotted the fire on the back deck of the pawn shop.

"I walked out there and it was already starting to billow," Wainman said. "One of the guys who saw smoke said he had already called 911, and by the time he called and they responded, it had already started blowing up in big flames."

The fire burned for more than three hours before crews gained control. Firefighters from Crawfordsville, Plainfield and Brazil were called to assist crews battling the blaze.

No injuries were immediately reported and the cause of the fire remained under investigation. 

The city said businesses in the block were just weeks away from undergoing renovations as part of a multi-million-dollar project called the Stellar Grant.

"It's devastating, because we care about how this looks and we care about the people who are here," said Greencastle Mayor Sue Murray. "We care about the vibrancy of downtown, and this is a setback."

Murray said the city will do what it can to save the businesses in the block.

Follow Julie Pursley on Twitter @JuliePursley6

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