Farmer loses barn, tractor in Emyvale fire

·2 min read

A fire closed part of Route 235 and destroyed a barn and a tractor Wednesday in Emyvale.

Leonard Malone, who farms around 12 beef cattle, lost all their winter feed in the blaze, he said.

“I don’t know if I’ll ever get over it.”

None of the animals were injured, but they’ll be spending the rest of the season at a neighbour’s farm where they’ll have enough to eat.

Malone was clearing snow for himself and some neighbours Wednesday morning. He put the tractor away in the barn before heading out to get the mail – just a few hundred meters up the road.

“Comin’ home I saw the black smoke,” he said.

North River Fire Department chief Anson Grant said the call came in around 9:30 a.m. Route 235 was closed for several hours as crews worked on the scene. By 3:30 p.m. the crew was down to hot spots.

A small excavator was at work in the barn alongside firefighters armed with pitchforks and a hose to douse any remaining flare-ups.

“It’s a lot of work getting it apart to get it out,” said Grant.

The barn was 72 by 32 feet and built in 1976. In addition to the tractor, Malone lost his generator, a sprayer, the hay and straw for his cattle and a lawnmower. The barn was not insured. Firefighters from North River and New Glasgow managed to keep the flames away from his other barns, the house, his truck and a smaller tractor.

Malone was also heartened by the response from neighbours.

“Three young fellas came up right away asking, ‘How can we help?’ ” said Malone. “A lot of young fellas wouldn’t do that.”

Other neighbours stopped in throughout the day to lend support.

Alison Jenkins, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, The Journal-Pioneer