White smoke drifts from the southwest corner of downtown Cushing where the feed store stood. Fire is a feed store's worst threat. From the beginning, firefighters were on the defense.
Lilbert-Looneyville Volunteer Fire Department Chief Bobby Brashears said, "There was a propane tank that blew prior to our arrival. They also had about 30 bags of fertilizer inside the building that went up also."
Next door, postal employees used a garden hose to drench their building until firefighters arrived. Fortunately, there was plenty of water. Cushing, Lilbert-Looneyville, Central Heights, and Douglass volunteers responded to the fire. Still, there was a shortage of manpower as most volunteers were at work.
Throughout the day, firefighters were watching for flare ups. As dry as it is, even a small spark could lead to another dangerous blaze.
As for the cause, firefighters will also consider clues the owner provided. Chief Brashears shared, "She did mention having a fan in the back room where the fire looks to have originated. So, that is a possibility. They was also popping fireworks up here last night, which could also be a possibility."
Owner Wanda Gloyna didn't enjoy watching fireworks of a different kind. From a lawn chair, she watched her business disappear. She enjoyed the feed store chats with customers, but has no plans to rebuild. "No, no. I had put it on the market to sell back in January and had buyers. Had three different people looking at it. But, no, I'm not going to rebuild a feed store," Gloyna said.
Gloyna lost furniture that belonged to her deceased father. She'll take away something from the feed store -- a tiny kitten that crawled from the blaze. His new name is Lucky.