Fire Destroys Joplin Victims' Salvaged Possessions

Fire takes down industrial building
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Jun 15, 2011 9:31 AM CDT
This frame grab from video shows a massive tornado on Sunday, May 22, 2011, outside Joplin, Mo.   (AP Photo/tornadovideo.net)
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(Newser) – In a cruel twist of fate, a fire has destroyed a Joplin industrial building where some tornado victims had placed their remaining belongings. Several tornado victims had been renting space in the metal warehouse at the Lesley Business Centers to store items they salvaged from the May 22 tornado. "It really hasn’t hit me yet—the magnitude of the loss—because of the exhaustion," says the building's owner, who tells the Joplin Globe he has been working 10- to 12-hour days since the tornado hit, helping families and businesses find storage space and new accommodations. "This was just heartbreaking."

When firefighters arrived at the site yesterday the building was fully engulfed and the fire was threatening to spread to other structures. The fire was brought under control less than two hours later; no injuries were reported, and the cause of the fire is under investigation. (Read more Joplin tornado stories.)

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