By Baylee Pulliam
The Herald Bulletin
ANDERSON, Ind. —
Dianna Hendricks sipped tea, watching through a picture window as her business blazed across the street.
Monday morning, smoke billowed several stories above the B and D Needful Things antique and vintage shop, 2209 E. 10th St., which Dianna owned with husband Barry.
“I just can’t believe how fast it went up,” said Dianna, standing in the foyer of neighboring Bliss Massage Therapy. “I was only there a few minutes.”
Dianna said she came in to open the vintage shop around 9 a.m., turned on the lights and went to use the bathroom. When she came out, she “heard popping and cracking and noises.”
“The whole room was smoke-filled and flaming up,” she said.
Anderson firefighters arrived about 9:15 a.m. and were later supported by Chesterfield and Richland Township fire departments.
Sections of 10th Street and Scatterfield Road were closed while crews fought the blaze, finally clearing it around 12:30 p.m.
Barry watched from the street, hands tucked in his pockets against the cold. He wasn’t sure the total cost of the damage, but, “This is going to cost us a lot,” he said.
“It was our Christmas season, and we were doing good,” he said, speaking over the rumble of hoses and fire engine motors.
As of press time, the cause was still under investigation. The area behind the main B and D’s storefront, which housed booths for 17 vendors, suffered the worst damage, said Anderson fire battalion chief Sam Aleshire.
When the smoke cleared, Barry saw into the scorched store.
“It’s pretty bad,” he said. The fire had destroyed almost everything in the shop — much of it one-of-a-kind, some of it sentimental.
“This was our home away from home,” Barry said.
Watching from across the street, Dianna wiped tears from her eyes.
“It doesn’t look like we’re going to be able to salvage anything,” she said. Friends patted her back to comfort her.
“This was our sole income,” she said. “We were counting on sales.”
The Hendrickses opened B and D’s in October of last year, selling used furniture, antiques and other collectibles. She said business this season had been good, and they were hoping to expand.
The building also housed another commercial space and a newly remodeled upstairs apartment, both of which were vacant.
Pamela DeGraw, of Indianapolis, owned the building with husband Eugene. She said she hoped her insurance would cover most of the damage.
“It’ll be taken care of,” she said. “It’d better be. I hope it is.”
One of the vendors housed in the worst-hit section of the building was Ernie’s Heart pet food pantry. Founder Jan Smith said none of her inventory was in the building, and she will hold distribution on Saturday, as planned.
“I just wish I could tell you where,” Smith said. Smith is asking all monetary donations to the pantry through the end of the year be given to the Hendrickses instead.
By Monday night, the B and D Facebook page had been flooded with condolences and prayers. Barry also posted, saying the shop had officially closed.
“We will be back someday Lord willing!,” he said. “We THANK EVERYONE for your support and friendship and help. We love you all. Thank you!”
Find Baylee Pulliam on Facebook and @BayleeNPulliam on Twitter, or call 648-4250.