Motel fire in Hoxie displaces several tenants

(Source: KAIT)
(Source: KAIT)
(Source: KAIT)
(Source: KAIT)
(Source: KAIT)
(Source: KAIT)

HOXIE, AR (KAIT) - A motel fire left about a dozen people in Hoxie looking for a place to stay Thursday.

According to Mayor Lanny Tinker, the Ole Hickory Motel on Texas Street caught on fire around 2:30 a.m.

Four rooms were destroyed and will have to be completely rebuilt.

The office also sustained major damage, and smoke got into all of the other units.

The building owner Don Nichols says the motel was actually being used more like an apartment building and several people were living there.

"We've got a bunch of people that's homeless down there now," Nichols said.

He did not have insurance for the building but still plans to repair the damage.

"It'll just be quite a bit of out-of-pocket expense, but we're going to put it back together," Nichols said. "It'll probably be better than it was."

He said they hope to have tenants back in the building in as little as one month.

"Of course we have to get it in the dry just as quick as we can then we can go to work on the rest of it," Nichols said. "So I guess the roof is where we will start at."

The Hoxie Service Center on Lawrence Street was opened early Thursday morning as the American Red Cross assisted the victims.

Georgia Beasley lived at the motel.

"It was awful, it was terrifying," she said about the fire. "

She said she is thankful for what the Red Cross did for them but is worried about where her family will go next.

"They helped us out a lot," Beasley said. "They gave us all a little card with some money on it so we can get into a hotel or something for the night. They gave us a few days, but it's still… after a few days, what do we do then?"

Beasley said she is just taking it day-by-day until the motel is repaired and they can move back in.

"It's not going to be anytime soon, so we are still without a place to go for a while," she said.

Hoxie Fire Chief Chris Ditto said they were still investigating the fire and conducting interviews Thursday afternoon.

He said they might have an official cause determined by Friday.

Copyright 2017 KAIT. All rights reserved.

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