Brett Warren, owner of Warren Furniture says the business has been in the family since 1928. (Photo: WBOC)
MILFORD, Del. - A fire has destroyed a historic building in downtown Milford. Warren Furniture Store along South Walnut Street burned Wednesday night. It took firefighters about three hours to get the blaze under control.
Brett Warren, owner of Warren Furniture says the business has been in the family since 1928.
"It's been my life, working here, hanging out with dad," said Warren.
Warren says he was out of town when he heard the news.
"I got a phone call from a friend. They said your buildings on fire. I came down and it was on fire. You got hardships in life and this is one of mine," said Warren.
Chief Deputy State Fire Marshall Scott Bullock says the fire was accidental but that it will take days to determine the actual cause. Bullock also said the fire started on the second floor.
"It was a very difficult fire for the firefighters and they did an outstanding job controlling the blaze and keeping it confined just to the Warren Furniture Building," said Bullock.
Bullock says damages are estimated around $750,000. No one was in the building at the time of the fire and no injuries were reported.
"The amount of fire damage is not significant. Its the smoke and the heat damage that's created a lot of the damage," said Bullock.
People who live in Milford say Warren Furniture has been a staple in the community. Now, it's more than 80 year history may have just come to an end.
"It's like a monument. It's been here forever. You can never replace it," said Gene Marcelin of Milford.
Warren's friends offered a helping hand in the cleanup.
"I pretty much shut down my job and came over to help a friend out. Dewey is a great guy and we all love him," said Jimmy Broadhurst of Lewes.
Warren says he appreciates everyone that came with a helping hand, but he still wonders what's next.
"I've been coming to work for 37 years at 8 o'clock. What do you do now? I'm 59 years old. It's tough to start over," said Warren.
Starting over is something his family never had to do. Warren's grandfather started the business and worked until he was 68-years old. His father worked until he was 89.
"They worked until they died. I was planning on the same game plan," said Warren.
Warren says his spirits remain high.
"I hope we'll be back. I'm not planning on quitting any time soon," said Warren.
It will take time to revive a building that's meant so much to so many people.
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