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NEWS – “Sifting through the ashes; fire victim recounts loss”

TREMONTON – By Ellen Cook, Headliner Media Specialist – July 18, 2021

Bailey Hess and her father Matt Hess, July 13, 2021 - Photo courtesy of Nicole Hess

Tremonton lost a slice of history on Tuesday afternoon, July 13, as a fire raged through the Daryl Building on Main Street, leaving the city’s 91-year-old landmark little more than a pile of rubble. It was a loss felt by many, but none more than the businesses owners and apartment dwellers who were housed within its walls.

Three hair salons, a nail salon and a space being remodeled by an esthetician, along with several apartments fell in the wake of the blaze, the cause of which, according to Tremonton Fire Department, is still under investigation.

While the owner of the building was insured, most of the business owners who rented space on the ground level of that building were not.

One owner, Bailey Hess, who opened her salon, Rustic Roots, in the Daryl Building just six months ago, said she was in the process of getting insurance, but the paperwork was not completed yet. For her, it was a devastating loss.

“It was really upsetting to watch everything we had worked for get taken from us,” she said. “After all, this is how we make our living.”

Hess was at work the day the fire started and was unaware of what was going on in the apartment complex above her. She said Kristi Barnett, the owner of another salon, The Beauty Box, came in to deliver the bad news.

“She told us the building was on fire and we needed to get out. I think someone from across the street at Family Dollar told her. We didn’t smell smoke or hear anything before that.”

Hess said they evacuated the building and watched as smoke billowed from the roof. Tremonton fire engines arrived a few minutes later and the displaced group watched them battle the growing flames with sinking hearts.

“We stayed to see what was going to happen,” Hess said. “I know the firefighters put in their best effort. They went in and tried to save the building. They did their best work.”

That effort was challenged, however, as the flames spread throughout the building. It soon became a scramble to save the rest of the businesses on the block. Those buildings were all evacuated, and a track hoe was brought in to tear down the still-burning walls of the historic edifice.

Seeing those bricks collapse on nearly new salon equipment was like watching dreams being crushed, according to Hess. “It was a total loss for all of us, pretty much.”

But dreams can be rebuilt, and Hess is looking to the future. She said some of the business owners, all in the beauty field, have banned together and are remodeling a space in another Tremonton building to set up their joint salon. They plan to work together “until we figure out what to do next.”

Hess said her customers have been more than understanding with the abrupt changes. “They have called me and texted me to offer support, asking me to call if I need anything.”

The same is true for the Tremonton community.

“The community has been very helpful and supportive, sending messages and offering best wishes,” Hess added. “They want us to rebuild and start our businesses again. They have been generous with donations, too.”

But for now, the pile of ashes that was once a busy beauty salon is still difficult for Hess to think about.

“I should be taking care of my clients,” she said, as her voice cracked with emotion. “This has been super hard, but I am hoping I can come back from it.”

Read's previously posted article on the Daryl Building fire below.

A donation account has been set up to help the victims recoup their losses. A post on Facebook noted: “As you know, our amazing community experienced a devastating fire, and some wonderful business owners lost everything they had…An account has been set up at Elevate Credit Union for donations to help them replace their livelihood. The account number is 604136. If you can find it in your heart to donate, every little bit helps…Let’s show them what we can do and how awesome this community is!”

Photos by John Hurley

The Daryl Building, Tremonton, July 13, 2021 - Photo by John Hurley

The Daryl Building, Tremonton, July 13, 2021 - Photo by John Hurley

The Daryl Building, Tremonton, July 13, 2021 - Photo by John Hurley
The Daryl Building, Tremonton, July 13, 2021 - Photo by John Hurley
The Daryl Building, Tremonton, July 13, 2021 - Photo by John Hurley
The Daryl Building, Tremonton, July 13, 2021 - Photo by John Hurley


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