SYRACUSE — It was a thankful, yet heartbreaking Thanksgiving Day for the family of John and Nancy F. Hoard, Carmel, who came to their lake home at 10515 N. Grand Blvd., Syracuse, for the holiday. Thankful because no lives were lost, including that of their two pit mixed dogs, but heartbreaking because of a loss of their home and most of the contents.
The Hoard family had just left their lake home only to return a short time later to find it engulfed in flames. Neighbors were able to rescue the two dogs.
The initial fire occurred around 4 p.m. Thanksgiving Day, with firefighters remaining at the scene until midnight. Turkey Creek Fire Territory was called back to the scene around 9:15 a.m. This morning, Friday, Nov. 25, for a rekindle in the second floor of the home.
Turkey Creek Fire Territory Fire Chief Mickey Scott reported the fire started on the northwest corner of the home, in the roof area. “At this time we’re still not sure what caused it. We believe it is accidental at this point, but we’re not 100 percent sure,” said Scott.
This morning’s rekindle was found in the insulation in the southwest corner of the second floor and quickly extinguished.
The fire destroyed the second floor of the five-bedroom, 2,520 square foot home. When firefighters arrived at the scene, the fire had broken through the roof and the firefighters immediately began protecting the homes on either side of the residence. The homes were approximately 15-feet apart. No damage was reported to these homes.
Full assistance of equipment and man power were called from Benton, Clinton, Tippecanoe/North Webster, Van Buren/Milford, and Sparta/Cromwell fire departments.
Water to battle the fire was drafted from Morrison Island. While there is a lake hydrant near the home, it was not operational. Scott stated it is believed the screen at the hyrdant’s opening had been damaged and not reported, as the hydrant only pumped muck. A draft from Morrison Island had to be established to provide water.
Nancy Hoard stated the home has been in the family since 1972. Scott noted the home was constructed in approximately 1904. The Hoard family is currently staying with neighbors before returning to their Carmel home. “I don’t know what the situation is, whether it can be restored or a total loss an tear down,” said Mrs. Hoard.