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Fire destroys packed garage

POSTED: July 17, 2013 10:56 p.m.

A garage on Wiley Road — filled with cars, motorcycles and a gun collection — burned Wednesday evening as the homeowner, her daughter and neighbors watched.

The garage in the 3800 block of Wiley Road belonged to Mary and Ronald “Rick” Gadbois. A second garage appeared to have been spared, Mary Gadbois said as she stood in her side yard watching the flames die as little was left to fuel them.

Neighbor Mark Preston was cooking out at his house with friends as a strong thunderstorm passed through and they heard a loud boom, saw flames and rushed to investigate.

“We heard a real big, loud explosion,” Preston said. “When it hit, you could hear something sizzling and burning.”

Preston banged on the Gadbois’ door to let Mary Gadbois know. Her husband Rick, a dentist, was in Atlanta and didn’t yet know Wednesday night.

“It’s going to be pretty hard on him,” said Dori Bishop, his daughter. “He doesn’t throw anything away.

“My dad’s truck — saved since 1986,” Bishop said. “His pride and joy.”

The sad inventory included several motorcycles, bass and ski boats, a vintage Massey-Ferguson tractor and a gun collection, at least some of which was in a safe, she said. Ammunition popped with hundreds of muffled explosions as Hall County firefighters worked the fire.

Bishop lamented the childhood memories gone up in flames.

“There was a lot of fun stuff in there,” she said.

Hall County Fire Chief David Kimbrell said the garage was a total loss, but said the damage estimate would come later. An investigator was sent to determine the cause.

Fire destroys garage

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