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McPhersonSentinel - McPherson, KS
  • Long-time McPherson business suffers fire

  • A fire broke out early Wednesday morning at O'Dell's Laundry and Linen, 321 N. Elm St. in McPherson.
    McPherson Fire Department was dispatched to the location at 3:22 a.m.
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  • A fire broke out early Wednesday morning at O'Dell's Laundry and Linen, 321 N. Elm St. in McPherson.
    McPherson Fire Department was dispatched to the location at 3:22 a.m.
    Fire Chief Jeff Deal said firefighters arrived to find a fully involved structure fire.
    "By the time we arrived, the fire was coming up through the roof," Deal said.
    At first, firefighters battled the blaze on foot but were pulled back for their own safety.
    "We used an aerial ladder," Deal said, "which allowed us to spray water down on the fire. It was the only thing that had a chance of saving the structure. The crew put in a valiant effort, but the building was becoming structurally unsound."
    Deal said the fire was extinguished by about 5:30 a.m. Wednesday.
    O'Dell's Laundry and Linen has been owned and operated for 67 years by Danny and Jan O'Dell of McPherson.
    O'Dell's manager John Steers of McPherson said he was thankful no one was hurt, and for the passerby who had called in to report the fire.
    "We'll continue on to the best of our ability," Steers said, "even using overnight shipping if need be. Our customers are our priority, and we intend to continue providing them top-notch service."
    O'Dell family friend and former employee Kimber Mellinger of McPherson said during its 67 year history, O'Dell's has hired many high school and college students.
    "For a lot of people O'Dell's was their first job," Mellinger said. "I used to work here. My brother and my nephew used to work here. It's a piece of McPherson history."
    McPherson Fire Department began an investigation to determine the cause of the fire Wednesday afternoon. Further details will appear in the Sentinel when they are available.
    Danny and Jan O'Dell wished to refrain from comment at this time.
    Contact Jeremy Webster by email at jwebster@mcphersonsentinel.com and follow him on Twitter @WebsterSentinel.

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