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Barn destroyed by early morning fire

ELKHART COUNTY, Ind. -- Smoke from a fire at the Martin Animal Bedding barn near Goshen could be seen for several miles Tuesday morning. The fire caused several road closures because of the heavy smoke.



The fire broke out about 6:30 a.m. at the facility on CR 119 near Goshen. Smoke caused State Road 119 to be closed between CR 17 and CR36.



Multiple fire departments responded to the fire at Martin Animal Bedding.


The business is a grinding operation that makes sawdust out of grain.


While firefighters worked to put out the fire, friends, family and neighbors of Kevin Martin showed up to help him.


"That's what farmers do, is help each other," said Arthur Zimmerman. "If someone is having a difficult situation or something happens like this we all come together to help."



They cleared out burnt metal and dug through mulch, searching for hot spots.



"We got fortunate today in that it was all inside a building a dry so the water didn't go way down deep into it," said Elkhart Fire Chief Ryan Rheinheimer.



Even though the fire destroyed Martin's barn, friends, family and even crews were impressed by the number of people who came together to help Martin out.



"In this community that's just what they do, they come together to help each other out," said Rheinheimer.



The barn and its machinery are a total loss.


Investigators say the sawdust grinder likely started the fire.

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