Volunteer officials discover blaze; cause still unclear
By J.R. Williams - firstname.lastname@example.org
GORE -- A rural Frederick County home was destroyed by fire Wednesday night.
Emergency crews were called to 831 Knob Road about 4:30 p.m. after Gore Volunteer Fire and Rescue Company officials discovered the blaze, according to company Chief Steve Holliday.
The small, two-story house, about 1.5 miles north of U.S. 50, was completely consumed by fire. Holliday said he drove to the area to investigate after a woman came into the fire hall and said she had seen smoke.
"We had a lady stopped in and said there was a large column of smoke," he said. "It had fire blowing out every window and through the roof when we got here the first time."
No calls had been received about the blaze before fire company officials discovered it, he said. The home stands alone on about 40 acres, according to a county database, and has few neighbors.
A large, white cloud of smoke could be seen from the road approaching the home.
More than two hours after the blaze was discovered, firefighters were still at the scene. They used a ladder, chain saw and pickaxes to cut through a beam and topple the home's second-story framing. Many firetrucks staged at the end of a long driveway as the sky grew black.
Holliday did not know if the home was occupied when the fire broke out, and said at about 5:30 p.m. that he had not spoken to an owner or occupant. A cause was unclear.
A shed nearby, full of belongings, was undamaged.
According to the county database, the home is owned by John C. Breck.
Frederick County fire and rescue companies from Gore, Gainesboro, Round Hill, North Mountain and Millwood Station responded with assistance from West Virginia units from Hampshire and Morgan counties.