Shokan auction/warehouse destroyed by fire


By Jay Braman Jr.
A strong fire erupted in an auction warehouse in Shokan Monday morning, claiming both the building and its contents before being brought under control.

Fire fighters responded to the call at about 8:40 a.m. and wrestled the blaze down in about an hour. But then, the building’s owner, Russell Oakes, called the fire company back at around 2 p.m. because flames began kicking up again.

The fire, which is believed to have been the result of an electrical problem, claimed the building, formally known as Petfare, on the corner of Route 28 and Ridge Road. Oakes said it was more than just a warehouse for auctions.
“It was all finished off inside,” he said. “Now its shot.”

Hosted monthly auctions
Oakes was leasing the structure to Eric Borjeson of West Shokan, who has been holding monthly auctions in the building for several years. Borjeson, who was uninsured according to Oakes, is said to have lost about $10,000 worth of inventory.

This month’s inventory included the contents of an old Odd Fellows Hall.
Also destroyed in the fire were Borjeson’s box truck and van that had parked close to the structure’s front entrance.
By the late afternoon Oakes, along with his brother/partner Robert, were already beginning to clean up and secure the disaster along with the help of several friends. Oakes said that he has not made any decisions about how to proceed beyond that.