SHARON (CBS/AP) – Nine horses and two donkeys were killed in a three-alarm barn fire in Sharon late Tuesday night.
It happened just before midnight at the Yankee Kennels on North Main Street.
Capt. Bert Cummings said firefighters arrived to find heavy smoke coming from the stables and when they tried to enter the fire quickly took off.
Mud also made it difficult for firefighters from a half dozen towns to reach the barn.
Cummings said none of the horses could be saved.
No people were hurt.
State Fire Marshal investigators were on scene Wednesday looking for the cause.
“At this time, it does appear accidental but, again, that depends on the investigation,” Sharon Deputy Chief Steven Cummings told WBZ-TV’s Ron Sanders.
There was an abundance of hugs for the long time owner of Yankee Kennels, Ed Little, as daylight came.
“I got in to one horse and the smoke was too great and I got out, for my own safety I got out of there,” lamented Little.
As the horse owners gathered throughout the morning, they consoled each other but most of them had a difficult time talking about their losses. “I’m more concerned about my wife and my kids. It’s tough,” said Jeff Feldman who lost J.J., Jumpin’ Jack Flash, the horse his 11-year-old son Benjamin, 13-year-old daughter Elizabeth and wife Meredith rode.
“It’s like losing a member of your family. They’ve had him since he was a baby, his whole life. And you hope your kids are going to grow up and enjoy him for their whole life and then you wake up and he’s gone,” explained Terri Hoyt, a friend of the Feldmans.
Ed Little was a firefighter in town for 36 years. He says he had checked the barn shortly past 8 p.m. Tuesday and saw nothing unusual. Selectmen came by Wednesday to see if there was anything they could do.
“Ed has tried to keep this place as a farm and to keep it Sharon, what we call Sharon,” said Walter “Joe” Roach who chairs the Board of Selectmen.
Ed credits the farm his father started in 1952 with prolonging his life. “I owe it all to these animals. And to be honest with you, will I rebuild? I don’t know if I’ll rebuild but I’ll always have animals,” he said.
It’s still not clear how the fire started.
The owner told WBZ-TV he’s not sure yet if he will rebuild.
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