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Business owners devastated after massive fire destroys storefronts

Posted at 7:35 PM, Jun 17, 2021
and last updated 2021-06-17 21:37:50-04

MILLCREEK, Utah — Business owners from fourteen local Utah businesses are now scrambling to survive after a massive, three-alarm fire in a next door apartment complex under construction destroyed their storefronts.

Business owners are not allowed back into their stores because of the danger of two large damaged cranes nearby, but from the outside, their stores are all but destroyed with smoke, fire and water damage.

“It's a shame… it's sad…," said Cy Waldren, Co-Owner of the business park that housed the local businesses. "All these businesses have been struggling trying to make it through the pandemic and then this unfortunate event happens.”

Read - Damage in the millions following large Millcreek fire

Glade Baldwin is another person whose livelihood was lost in Wednesday's fire.

“I wish I could blame the red eyes…on the smoke,” Baldwin said while fighting back tears, “but it's sad for me…”

Baldwin owns Hyland Pharmacy and has been operating his family-owned pharmacy since 1981. He said he was sitting in his store when someone came in, warning him to get out.

"Somebody came in and opened the door and said you need to get out of here there’s a fire in the building,… and I said no… there’s no fire," Baldwin said.

When he got outside, he looked back to see the fire reaching the tops of nearby construction equipment.

"I stepped out and at that point… the fire behind me was so high it was hitting the tops of the crane,” Baldwin described.

Read - Massive construction site fire seen across Salt Lake Valley

The owner of Jung’s Alterations was also trying to get out following the building with the fire bearing down. According to fellow business owners, she was the only civilian injury from the fire.

After evacuating she felt panicked and spent the night in the hospital as a precaution because of heart problems.

“She’s like 72 years old… a wonderful little Korean seamstress,” Baldwin said, “She called today and was concerned she had peoples wedding dresses.”

She is now resting at home according to Unified Fire.

Read - Drought conditions may lead to longer wildfire response times

As for Glade, he says he hopes that as a pharmacy he will be able to set up a temporary pharmacy in a trailer in the parking lot.

“Keep the pharmacy going while the rehab and fix that building…” Glade said “I keep telling myself I’ve made it through every bad experience of my life… I have every expectation of getting through this one.”