A vacant Main Street building that usually goes unnoticed was the site of a huge response effort in the early morning hours of Saturday, Jan. 2 when the building was reported on fire.
The call went out at 2:09 a.m. for a fire at the old Bryson City Funeral Home and Memorial Services building, located at 285 Main Street (across from Stonebrook Lodge). The first firefighter was on scene at 2:16 a.m. with trucks on scene at 2:20 a.m. and was contained at 2:31 a.m. and responders began working inside the building, according to Bryson City Fire Chief Charles Bryson.
The one-story section of the building that was formerly a service station was fully involved when responders arrived.
The fire is believed to have originated in the basement of that section of the building where equipment including four-wheelers was being stored. The building also still had power to it.
“The cause of the fire is still undetermined and under investigation,” said Ervin Winchester, Swain County Fire Marshal, on Monday morning.
The firefighters were able to contain the fire and prevent widespread damage to the two-story brick section of the building, which was separated by a fire wall.
Responding agencies included Bryson City, Alarka, West Swain, Qualla and Cherokee Fire Departments, Bryson City Police Department, Swain County Sheriff’s Office and Swain County EMS. The scene was cleared 4:52 a.m.