Hebron barn fire kills horses, puzzles owners

HEBRON, Ky. -- A barn fire in Hebron took the lives of two thoroughbred horses Thursday afternoon.

The fire started at about 3 p.m. and destroyed the barn in the 2600 block of Petersburg Rd. A nearby resident reported seeing the flames shortly after 4 p.m.

Crews battled the fire with a defensive posture attack, and found the remains of the animals inside. They said between 80 - 90 percent of the barn was in flames when they arrived. The blaze was extinguished at about 5 p.m.

The owners of the barn were uninjured, officials at the scene said.

"Everything was engulfed in flames, it's a total loss," said property owner Bob Mueller.

He told WCPO reporter Jay Warren that when he first saw the fire, he worried someone may have been hurt, or worse.

"I was thinking the worst, I mean because my concern was, was there somebody in the barn, which I'm hoping nobody was in the barn," Mueller said. "My other concern was that we had a couple of horses in the back of the barn, one in the back arena, and one in one of the stalls and they both did not get out."

A 14-year-old junior firefighter ran from a home next door to see if he could help.

"I felt the front door for heat and it wasn't hot," Evan Stevens said. "So I opened the door and there was fire everywhere, so I tried to shut the door so a back draft wouldn't happen. I went around the back door and the back door was already open, and I couldn't see there were flames and smoke pouring out."

Mueller said his barn was well kept, and is puzzled by what could have caused the fire.

"The barn is immaculate, but I mean, everything is up to code, everything is in good shape, so we don't know why," he said. "The barn was built 25 years ago, and it's a well built barn."

Later Thursday evening, Boone County fire investigators believed they uncovered the blaze's origin, but the cause remained unclear.

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