Pike County Times

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PO Box 843, Zebulon, Georgia 30295. You can donate through PayPal by clicking here. Becky Watts: Phone # 770-468-7583 editor(@)pikecountytimes.com
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BREAKING NEWS: Pike County Lion's Club Depot Catches Fire But Is Saved
By Editor Becky Watts

ZEBULON - An emergency call about a fire at the old Train Depot in Zebulon went out last night about 6:15 p.m. The Pike County Fire Department responded within minutes and put out the flames before too much damage was done to the 19th century building. Here is a glimpse of what happens when a citizen sees something and makes a phone call to take care of what could have been a huge historical loss for Pike County.

Last night shortly before 6:15, Jeffrey Milner and his son, Landon Milner, the owners of Middle Georgia Fleet Services drove past the Pike County Lion’s Club Depot in Zebulon and thought that they saw smoke coming from the back eave of the building. They were in their wrecker on Hwy 18 coming into Zebulon so they circled around to come back down Jackson Street to confirm if it was really smoke that they saw.

By that time, the smoke was coming from the back of the building as well as through the doors. Jeffrey made the call that brought E-911 in to help and within minutes, members of the Pike County Fire Department were on the scene. First one on the scene was volunteer Kenny Harris who quickly described the problem and helped bring in the extra help that was needed.

About an hour earlier, the air conditioning and a floor fan had been turned on in order to cool the place off for a meeting that evening. Pike County Fire Department Chief Rick O’Barr said that it appeared that the motor in the floor fan locked up and shorted out causing a fire that began to devour the old wood in the building. About 6:15 p.m. volunteers from the Pike County Fire Department began arriving to handle the fire.

“The members of the department did a fantastic job at forcing entry in to the building and quickly extinguishing the fire,” said Chief O’Barr. By the time all was said and done, there were four engines and a ladder truck on the scene as well as the Zebulon Police Department to direct traffic around the trucks working the fire. There were volunteers from Stations 1, 6, 7, and 8 on the scene as well as members from the Meansville Fire Department.

“If you see something, please call,” said Chief O’Barr. “The sooner we get the call, the more of a chance we have to save the structure.”

Fletcher Dunn, the Lion’s Club President, was on the scene last night as the fire was extinguished. He advised that insurance has been contacted as well as a fire and water restoration company that will clean up the smoke and water damage to do the necessary repairs to the wall and rewiring needed to restore the Depot.

He said that it would need quite a bit of work, but it would be back in use again when the restoration is finished.

The building is built of old wood with pegs in many places throughout the building. The earliest date that he has seen on the wall was in 1888 where people wrote their names and signed the year. The firefighters saved this historical building, and he has repeatedly expressed his gratitude to them as well as to Jeffrey Milner who made the original phone call that brought firefighters to the scene of the fire.

President Dunn said that firefighters were so kind and that they stayed to make sure that the fire was taken care of before they pulled out. “On behalf of the Lion’s Club, I want to thank Jeffrey and the volunteer fire department for their prompt and professional actions,” he said. “They saved a historic building for our community and did a wonderful job for the Lion’s Club. Words are really not adequate to express our gratitude.”

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