HADLEY, Mass. (WWLP) - It's been two days since a massive fire destroyed the Hadley strip mall. On Tuesday, nearby residents tried to get a closer look at the damage.
Andy Stewart, a Hadley resident told 22News, “Yeah as soon as we pulled up you could tell everything was gone. I haven't seen a fire like this ever.”
“There was a lot of nice businesses here and to see it destroyed and just totally destroyed. I feel sorry for everybody involved,” Barbara Stewart of Hadley explained.
David Thatcher has owned the strip mall since 2000 and says he's still in shock.
“It's a shock. I've owned it for 13 years it's been here all the time now it's gone. It's a total loss,” Said Thatcher
The strip mall was home to 13 businesses. One of them, MiTierra, a popular Mexican restaurant was severely damaged, but investigators are focusing their investigation inside the business next door, a laundromat.
Michael Spanknebel, Hadley Fire Chief told 22News,”They are in that area right now but they still have a ways to go they are peeling the building back away and going through everything very carefully.”
State investigators are still working to determine how and where this fire may have started. They are focusing their efforts on the mall's laundromat, but won't say if they are considering this suspicious; or believe if there was foul play involved. Anyone with information is being urged to contact the Hadley Fire Department at (413) 584-0874.