Dan Gordon might’ve lost his 1973 river boat to the flames that sent thick, black smoke into the skies over Holiday Marina Tuesday night, but the Buford resident said he is grateful no one was seriously injured.
Hall County Fire Services reported Tuesday night that four boats and two personal watercraft were burned in the fire reported at about 8:30 p.m. June 1 at 6900 Lanier Islands Parkway in South Hall. Wednesday afternoon they reported "the number of vessels involved in this incident has risen to a total of 11."
No one was injured, but one person who was evaluated declined to be taken to the hospital, Hall County Fire Services spokesman Zachary Brackett said that night.
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Gordon said someone texted him a photo of the marina fire at 8:43 p.m. The flames had reached his slip on Dock 7. When he got there, Gordon said his 1973 river boat was already charred. He had owned the boat for nearly three decades.
“I’ve got a lot to be thankful for. Nobody was hurt last night,” he said. “Boats can be replaced.”
Brenda Musone, who owns a boat across the water from where the fire happened, said she first saw the smoke while leaving a nearby grocery store as the sun was setting. Musone said she then drove down Lanier Islands Parkway toward the marina, parked her car and walked to Dock O, where her boat is located.
“I realized it was right by my dock,” she said. “People were walking to the end of my dock to look at it.”
Musone said she watched the fire blaze and noticed Hall County firefighters running toward the scene.
“They put their lives at risk with all that gasoline,” she said. “They’re heroes.”
The cause of the fire is under investigation by the Hall County Fire Marshal's Office. No other updates were available early Wednesday afternoon.
This article originally published in our sister paper the Gainesville Times.