Lightning is being blamed for a fire that destroyed an over 100-year-old home in downtown Viola on Wednesday.
Lightning reportedly struck a tree next to the home and then caught the structure on fire. The home is owned by Clifford Turner Sr. and Clifford Turner Jr., who both lived there occasionally.
“Our life was in that home and we lost everything,” said Amy Brown, who is the daughter and sister of the two home owners. “I stayed there off and on, and my 5-year-old son had most of his toys in there.”
Brown says her father and brother were vacationing up north when the fire struck Wednesday. She said yesterday the two are on their way back to Warren County.
Nearby resident Mary Gaffin said there was much lightning in the Wednesday afternoon storm.
“I heard lightning strike something but I thought it was the house itself,” said Gaffin. “They told me later it struck a tree and ran into the house.”
Viola and Morrison firefighters responded to the blaze. The house is a total loss. The fire started shortly after noon.