BEECHER, IL – Tragedy struck in Wednesday morning as a raging fire tore through a barn, leaving the fate of eight horses hanging in the balance.
According to Will County Sheriff’s deputies, officers responded to the alarming scene at 260 W. Delite Inn Road at 9:35 a.m., accompanied by over 20 local area fire departments, including Beecher, Peotone, Crete, Park Forest, University Park, Kankakee, Grant Park, Crown Point, Saint Anne, and others.
Multiple fire units were required due to the nearest fire hydrant being located over four miles from the barn.
Early reports indicate that the fire erupted when the owners were burning wood near the barn’s north side. Strong winds suddenly picked up, igniting the hay stored inside the structure. The inferno quickly consumed the horse barn, making it nearly impossible to save all its equine occupants.
Although several horses were successfully rescued thanks to rescue crews quickly cutting an opening in the building, the whereabouts and well-being of eight horses remain unknown, leading to fears that they may have perished in the blaze.
The Illinois State Fire Marshal is expected on site soon to join local authorities to determine the cause and extent of the devastating fire. Meanwhile, the dedicated team from Will County Animal Control is present, providing care and support to the surviving horses.
The community is left heartbroken by the loss of these majestic creatures, beloved companions and partners to their owners. Residents in the area are urged to offer their assistance and support during this difficult time.
In the aftermath of the fire that engulfed the barn, Village authorities have issued a statement alerting residents about potential water quality issues.
Tap water may turn cloudy or become discolored. To address this, residents are strongly advised to run their COLD water until it runs clear again.
Additionally, the Village authorities recommend conducting a water quality check before laundering clothes, as discoloration may affect garments. The Village expressed heartfelt appreciation to the numerous first responders who bravely battled the flames.
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