June 10, 2008

What is it about teenagers and fire?

In late April of this year, a wonderful old building in Concrete, WA burned to the ground. I had written about it here: Awww crap - the Concrete Castle burns in a suspicious fire and had posted some photos a week later here: Our day today - a trip to Winthrop for some Ice Cream and a Hot Dog. Turns out to have been three teenagers playing with lighters. When the fire got to where they couldn't control it, they ran and didn't bother to get help. Now this wonderful landmark is gone. Well, it happened again yesterday. A 100 year old building in the heart of Lynden, WA burned. I had to drop some things off at our bookkeepers today (they are in Lynden) so I brought my camera:


When I first heard about the fire, I didn't know what building it was in. I was worried that it might be one of these two. The first one houses a favorite restaurant -- one that has been there since 'God made Dirt'. Great homestyle cooking. The later two are the Dutch Inn, a rambling building containing a small hotel, several restaurants and gift shops, a small community theater. A lot of fun to visit and yes, the windmill works.. It turned out to have been Delft Square, across the street. Cement outer walls but all of the internal structure was wood


The fire department was out there this afternoon inspecting:

And the news came out in this afternoons Lynden Tribune:
BREAKING NEWS: Two in custody in relation to Delft fire
Lynden Police arrested two Lynden-area teen boys, ages 13 and 14, on Tuesday in connection with the fire that burned Delft Square Monday, Police Chief Jack Foster said.

Reports have been turned over to the Whatcom County Prosecuting Attorney's Office, and identical charges are expected to be filed against the two youths by Wednesday, Foster said.

The charges will be: first-degree reckless burning, second-degree burglary, and criminal trespass, Foster said.
Like I asked before: What is it about teenagers and fire? Lynden is a very small conservative town; founded by Dutch immigrants who moved here to farm. Those mokes are going to be ostracized if they have family in town. This wasn't some barn that could be rebuilt, this was a 100 year old landmark building in the heart of town and the damage will extend way beyond the harm to the businesses in the building; these businesses were a bank, several escrow, property and title businesses, an investment firm. I know that they will probably have off-site backups but the time needed to restore will throw a monkey wrench into a lot of people's lives... Posted by DaveH at June 10, 2008 10:06 PM
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