Cause of Hebron Church Fire Still Unknown - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Cause of Hebron Church Fire Still Unknown

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The charred ruins of St. Paul's Episcopal Church are shown Tuesday, July 29, 2014. (Photo: WBOC) The charred ruins of St. Paul's Episcopal Church are shown Tuesday, July 29, 2014. (Photo: WBOC)
HEBRON, Md.- The cause of the fire that destroyed St. Paul's Episcopal Church in Hebron last week is still unknown.

The fire broke out around 11:15 am on Tuesday, July 22, and took nearly 100 firefighters from multiple area fire companies to extinguish the flames.  The Maryland State Fire Marshal's Office estimated the damage at about $500,000.  A week after the fire, members of the small St. Paul's congregation are still left with many questions. 

"What happened? What caused this? What did we do wrong?  What did I do wrong?  I have no idea," said Tom Lovett, who is the senior warden at St. Paul's. "It has been going through my mind for over a week.  What did we all miss?  Because we were so particular about how we kept the church."

Lovett went on to say the history of the church is something the congregation will never be able to replicate.

"This church was completed in 1773," Lovett said. "Now, you've got to understand that this church was completed before we had a constitution in this country.  So you look at the history from that time forward.  The wars she's gone through.  They took the shutters off at one time, somebody told me and made litters out them to carry wounded soldiers on them."

This past Sunday, service was held in the parish hall adjacent to St. Paul's ruins.  Lovett said the congregation is awaiting official word from the state fire marshal before making any concrete plans on what to do next.

Officials from the State Fire Marshal's Office told WBOC on Tuesday that determining the cause of a fire as large as the one at St. Paul's can take time and it is not uncommon for the investigation to last a week or more.

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