None hurt, but fire destroys Shakey’s Caf’
Employees at Shakey’s Caf’ in Palmyra were going about their usual lunch-hour routine Saturday when a customer came in about 12:50 p.m. and said the building was on fire.
Pam Walker, who’s been working about six weeks at the caf’ on Main Street, said everyone went outside to see for themselves.
‘We got our vehicles out of the way,’ she said. Then, ‘We went back in and got our personal belongings.’
All five people inside the building at the time of the fire escaped unharmed.
‘There was no smoke in the building,’ Walker said.
The ‘customer’ was Chuck McGee, a member of the Floyd County Fire Investigation Team who happened to drive by at the time and saw the flames. Besides evacuating the building, he made sure the utilities to the building were shut off, Walker said.
It appears the fire started above a storage area in the back of the building, Walker said. The caf’ fronts U.S. 150 just east of the intersection with S.R. 135.
Randall King, the assistant fire chief for the Palmyra Volunteer Fire Dept., said when he arrived within minutes of learning there was a fire, there ‘was solid black smoke. I couldn’t see going in.’
Ramsey VFD was notified of the fire because of a mutual aid agreement, said Scooter Elliott, chief of the Palmyra VFD, and Harrison Township was called soon thereafter to bring its ladder truck. Firefighters from Greenville provided additional manpower.
‘It took about three hours to get the fire under control,’ Elliott said. ‘The building has been added on to and revamped about seven times. Added roofs made it hard to get underneath to extinguish the fire.’
Shakey’s had opened as usual on Saturday at 7 a.m., said Walker, who also works a few days a week at Lisa’s Sports Bar and Grill in Corydon. Both establishments are owned by Stanley Kingsley and Lisa Lesaux.
Elliott said he and the owners met on Monday with Indiana State Fire Marshal Andy Long. The building was insured, Elliott added.
‘The fire is believed to have started from an electrical malfunction,’ Elliott said, ‘but officially we’re leaving it as ‘undetermined’ until further investigations are completed.’
No firefighters were injured but a few were checked for exhaustion by the EMS from Harrison County Hospital. ‘We had several businesses bring us drinks and people brought us ice,’ Elliott said. ‘I don’t know who it all came from.’
The Harrison County Sheriff’s Dept. and Indiana State Police assisted Palmyra Town Marshal Rex Frederick with traffic while U.S. 150 was closed.