Name of Townshend fire victim being withheld

TOWNSHEND — The name of the person who died in a five-alarm fire on Maggie Ladd Road is being withheld at this time, pending notification of kin.

The Townshend Fire Department responded to the Friesians of Majesty horse farm at 12:30 a.m. Sunday, finding a barn with an attached two-unit apartment fully engulfed in flames.

According to a press release from Det. Sgt. Larry Smith of the Vermont State Police Fire Investigation Unit, the barn was a large open bay barn with two separate apartments located above the barn.

During the blaze, which does not appear to be suspicious, according to the press release, Townshend Volunteer Fire Chief Douglas Winot was told that one person, an employee, was not accounted for.

"The entire barn had been consumed by fire and the second floor collapsed down onto the first," stated the press release. "The fire department was unable to locate the subject during fire fighting efforts."

After the fire was extinguished, investigators were able to talk with witnesses who told them the victim may have been in the area of the lab. "This was also the location where the fire appeared to have originated. After excavating the area investigators were able to locate the victim."

The owners of Friesans of Majesty told WCAX the building that burned to the ground was used for breeding. They also told WCAX that they did no have insurance on the barn and expected the loss to total about $1 million.

Firefighters were able to keep the flames from spreading to a nearby barn.

According to a neighbor, no horses died in the fire.


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