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Indiana fire department dedicates new fire house after fire destroyed their last station

The fire house in Deputy, Indiana has been rebuilt from the ashes.
Published: Jun. 18, 2022 at 9:44 PM EDT
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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE) - The fire house in Deputy, Indiana has been rebuilt from the ashes.

In 2018 an electrical fire burned down the Deputy Volunteer Fire Department. Today a fresh start after a new firehouse was dedicated in the same spot.

The fire that burned down the station started in the kitchen and quickly spread. It destroyed the building along with three of the department’s trucks and gear. Now the process of working in a temporary building with donated equipment has come to an end.

Shawn Collins has been around the fire house in Deputy his entire life. His father helped build the station in the 1970s and Collins would help serve drinks when he was a kid.

“I remember when it first happened I was driving a truck and when I heard the fire house burnt, I just about had to stop my truck and practically broke down,” Collins said.

Collins felt like he lost a part of himself when it burned down, but a part of the building was able to make it’s way into the new station.

“We had one of the bricks off of the old building incorporated into the floor of the new station.”

Fire Chief Mike Hazelwood had to do a double take when he first heard about the fire.

“I saw the address and I thought that’s the address for the firehouse. So I called to our school which is just catty-corner from us here to ask the principal what was on fire and that’s when she told me that it was our firehouse,” Hazelwood said.

The small southern Indiana fire station was able to continue to operations thanks to donations from surrounding fire stations and the community they serve.

A grant also helped with the rebuilding process.

“Our big appeal was we lost our firehouse and we have nothing. So that was a big pull on the heartstrings maybe. I don’t know,” Hazelwood said with a laugh.

“I’m just so thankful that our community stands behind us as much as they do and I hope they continue to do so that we can keep serving the community and move on from there,” said Collins.

They initially wanted to relocate the station, but there wasn’t enough room in the area. They’re still looking for donations to get more equipment.

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