Ogemaw County Fire Leaves Grocery Store Destroyed

The Ogemaw Fire Department is investigating a fire that destroyed a favorite grocery store on Sunday.

Just outside of West Branch, Brian’s Fruit and Meat Market burned down.

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Courtesy of Jessica Bussard

Fire departments from both Gladwin and Mills Township helped assist the county in putting out the flames.

The Ogemaw County Sheriff’s Office says the first calls came in just before 2 p.m. Sunday afternoon.

“The first on scene was West Branch Police Department and then we were right behind them with two of our responding units–the sheriff’s office,” said Sheriff Brian Gilbert.

Being a large grocery store, firefighters say there were several dangerous factors involved.

“What the concern was, was that it was developing into a full-structured fire and inside that building, besides Brian’s Fruit Market, was three storage tanks—which were liquid propane,” said Gilbert.

The owner of Brian’s Fruit and Meat Market was the first to try and extinguish the flames.

“The owner of the building was in his office and he had looked through his monitor system and seen darkness and then he looked through the other monitor and seen the fire,” stated Gilbert.

Denise Nault works across the street from the store and was a frequent shopper– calling it her favorite spot.

“It’s pretty devastating, that was my go-to, that’s where I liked to shop,” said Nault. “I’d seen it on Facebook, like right away–everybody knew that it was happening, so–just sad, sad for everybody.”

Fortunately, no one was hurt in the fire.

“Our main concern is that everybody’s safe and it wasn’t open for business at the time,” said Gilbert.