Crews fight blaze in downtown Dyersburg

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DYERSBURG, Tenn. — A fast moving fire ripped its way through a building in downtown Dyersburg Tuesday morning, leaving businesses gutted and one man homeless. Firefighters battled the fire for more than four hours in heavy rain and wind. The historic downtown building stood for more than 100 years but was destroyed Tuesday within a matter of minutes. “It’s sad to see one of the buildings downtown in this historic district go up in flames like this,” Clayton Hayes said. The building housed a law firm as well as a watch repair shop and a number of apartments. Firefighters say one of the tenants, Larry Curry, was home when the fire broke out. “He lost everything in this fire, including his cat,” Janice Tringali said. “This is just devastating to him.” Curry, who’s confined to a wheelchair, escaped the flames without a scratch. He said he was even able to warn others who live near the building as well. “They thought the east wall of the building might come down, and that’s when the roof fell in,” Hayes said. Firefighters said because the buildings are so close together on the court square it was hard to keep the fire contained to just one building. “We had a couple other buildings that we were concerned about so we kept water on them,” Dyersburg Fire Chief Tim Ware said. “But we were able to keep it from spreading.” Although most of the damage was contained to just one building it still has affected many, and that has the community coming to the rescue. “It really is amazing that Dyersburg has just come together for these people,” Tina Strait said. “The phone has not stopped, and people keep stopping by.” But with this devastating loss, the community vows to rebuild and to help Larry Curry bounce back. “With the help of everyone he will overcome this,” Tringali said. “Like everything else, he has always overcome big odds.” Firefighters said the cause of the fire is still under investigation and ATF agents are assisting. No injuries were reported. A fund has been set up in Dyersburg to help Larry Curry. If you’d like to send a donation, these can be sent in Larry’s name to Security Bank at 120 North Mill Avenue in Dyersburg.

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