Fire Destroys Two Doon Businesses
On February 14, 1954
Sunday, February 14, 1954 was a bad day for Doon and especially for Doon's Main Street. The fire alarm sounded at 5 a.m. Tony's Lunch was a raging inferno. Doon firemen were soon on the scene but there was no hope for the building and Stan's Shoe Store adjacent to it also appeared doomed. Rock Rapids and Rock Valley firemen were called to help for there was concern that much of the business block on that side of the street would be leveled.
Firemen played water between Tony's Lunch and Stan's but it was a futile battle. Suddenly a hose was misdirected to a window and oxygen fed the superheated contents of the shoe and clothing store and within minutes it too was a raging inferno.
The effort was now directed to saving other buildings, with success.
It was a beautiful day, recalls Stan Surma, who immigrated to Doon in 1949 as a Polish displaced person. The weather was balmy and it was Valentine's Day, but the day was sad. Stan lost everything.
But within less than a week, with the help of creditors and the support and encouragement of townspeople Surma was back in business in the old town hall.
It had been a bad time for fires in Doon, just the week before Johnnie Otten lost his garage to flames.
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