Investigation continues the day after strip mall fire

CLARKSVILLE, IN (WAVE)- The day after a fire destroys five businesses in a Clarksville, Indiana strip mall, the pain and reality is settling in for the people directly affected. But, a show of support is also emerging in the wake of the fire.

"It didn't seem real yesterday," Sharon Armstrong said Saturday as she recalled Friday's fire "It was just too....and then today, to see it boarded up, it's's real," She said.

It was all too real for Armstrong. Sunday, she and others stopped to look at what was left of the strip mall on Hunters Station. The day after 5 businesses, including her husband's, were destroyed by fire. Armstrong said she watched the building burn.

"There was just nothing you could do except sit and watch it and be glad that everybody was safe and nobody was hurt in the whole mess," Armstrong said.

Ten people got out safely. Her husband's business, Armstrong Chiropractic, was among those destroyed. They'd been there 18 years.

"It's just setting in and you know, there's a lot of people that have to start over," Armstrong said "A lot of employees through these 5 businesses that are going to have to go elsewhere and start over as well, so. just, starting over."

The Sellersburg Fire Department said they fought 35 mile per hour winds, in addition to the flames. Next door, at P. C. Lumber and Hardware, is a 12-acre lumber yard. Store Manager Charlie Smith watched intently.

"I personally know a couple of the families that were involved in the businesses," Smith said. "For them to lose their business is very unfortunate and we were lucky. This is a good community, this is a tight-knit community. Everybody sticks together. Any help that they would need, we would definitely be here for them," Smith said.

Armstrong said she and her family have received "a lot of support."

"A lot of phone calls. A lot of people offering whatever we need. It lets you know what's important and that's that nobody's hurt. All of this is stuff and it can be replaced," She said.

Sellersburg Fire officials say the cause of the fire remains under investigation, but officials say nothing appears suspicious.

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