Archive for Friday, February 13, 2009

Mobile home on East 19th declared total loss in fire

Lawrence Firefighters battle flames in a mobile home at 1908 E. 19th Street around 12:45 p.m. on Friday, Feb. 13, 2009.

Lawrence Firefighters battle flames in a mobile home at 1908 E. 19th Street around 12:45 p.m. on Friday, Feb. 13, 2009.

February 13, 2009, 12:45 p.m. Updated February 13, 2009, 2:07 p.m.


Mobile home on East 19th declared total loss in fire

Fire destroyed an East Lawrence mobile home on Friday afternoon. Enlarge video

Lawrence Firefighters douse a blaze in a mobile home fire at 1908 E. 19th Street around 12:45 p.m. on Friday 13, 2009.

Lawrence Firefighters douse a blaze in a mobile home fire at 1908 E. 19th Street around 12:45 p.m. on Friday 13, 2009.

Ben Allen, a 48-year-old Lawrence musician, had been gone about 45 minutes before he returned to the charred remains of his mobile home, which had caught fire minutes after he left.

Firefighters with Lawrence-Douglas County Fire Medical responded to an emergency call about 12:35 p.m. Friday.

By the time Allen returned, his home, Lot E11 of Brookwood Mobile Home Park, 1908 E. 19th St., had been deemed a total loss.

“I’m OK,” Allen said. “I’m ticked off, but I’m OK.”

The mobile home continued to billow white smoke the rest of the afternoon as firefighters worked to put out the flames.

Fire Chief Mark Bradford said the fire was under control at 1:01 p.m. He said crews were investigating the cause of the fire, which he said should be determined by today.

Allen moved to Lawrence four years ago. He said he’d been living at Lot E11 for the past two years.

Allen said he’d had a couple of offers for a place to stay the night, but he didn’t know what he would do for the long term. He said he didn’t have insurance to cover the loss. Allen declined an offer of assistance from the Douglas County chapter of the American Red Cross.


Christine Pennewell Davis 6 years ago

that is one heck of a fire hope no one was hurt. LFD thanks for your dedication.

woodenfleaeater 6 years ago

At least it was a trailer and not a house. Trailers are a dime a dozen.

Esq2eB (Anonymous) says…

Total loss = $78.23

So, I take it, his guitar was in the trailer?

maxcrabb 6 years ago

Way to make mom and dad proud Esq2eB...

I'm not exactly what aspect of the story you are commenting on, but everyone has to make their way through life.

Raider 6 years ago

"which had caught fire minutes after he left."


jeffds01 6 years ago

minutes after he left.....yes raider very interesting

did he leave some on the stove, or maybe in the oven, or even a candle burning


George_Braziller 6 years ago

I'm just wondering if any of you trolls have ever personally been through an event like this. If you haven't you don't know what it's like. In just a few minutes it could happen to you as well.

flux 6 years ago

Do you believe in Karma Woodenfleaeater?

woodenfleaeater 6 years ago

flux: Do you believe in Karma Woodenfleaeater?

I sure do. Why do you ask?

flux 6 years ago

By the way you are making fun of this gentlemens' misfortune, I would assume some bad things might be coming your way.

woodenfleaeater 6 years ago

Bad things such as.....mother-in-law, ex-girlfriends, police, sheriff, automobile??? What exactly can you see coming my way??? Tell me oh great flux!!!

Katara 6 years ago

woodenfleaeater (Anonymous) says…

Bad things such as…..mother-in-law, ex-girlfriends, police, sheriff, automobile??? What exactly can you see coming my way??? Tell me oh great flux!!! ~~~~~~~~~~~~ You're made of wood and you are giggling about a tragedy that involves fire. Draw your conclusion here.

flux 6 years ago

At least it was a trailer and not a house? This mans loss lacks significance because of his economic status? I dont know whats coming your way, thats the scary part

woodenfleaeater 6 years ago

He didn't have insurance on his residence. My point is at least it was a trailer and he had less net loss than if it was an uninsured house. I know he probably lost a significant amount of memories and assets in the fire, which is horrible and is a very big tragedy. But if a house would have burnt down, he would be out alot more money. And karma wise, my family house burned down when I was a kid, and I lost my beloved Boston Terrier. I know how much my parents lost, money wise included. And you would lose alot more monetary wise with a house than a trailer.

flux 6 years ago

First of all if you have a had similar experience, then you should know better. A secondly you said trailers were a dime a dozen. The point you made was very clear, stop back tracking....liar!

geekin_topekan 6 years ago

Come now!We've a barn to raise and a day to do it!

ksmax 6 years ago

Good grief people, he lost his home and all of his belongings, have a heart! Even if it was a mobile home, key word is "HOME"!

WHY 6 years ago

No key word is mobile Its like my car burning down.

igby 6 years ago

Are all of you from Japan or just can't write for s**t. Lol.

WHY 6 years ago

Hawk Do you remember those kids in high school who dropped out. That is how this can be in Lawrence.

somebodynew 6 years ago

I feel compelled to comment on this section. I understand making jokes about trailer living and all, but where is the simple compassion for someone who has just lost everything he owns. I don't care if it burned up in a car, multi-million dollar house, or a trailer - he has nothing left.

There should have been an even balance on here between the jerks and the overly compassionate. But it is just stupid comments about the worth of a trailer.

OK, I have plenty of memories of dealing with that particular trailer park in my past job, but still, this was this man's stuff. Even a "cold-hearted b**d" like myself feels bad for him.

geekin_topekan 6 years ago

I met Ben Allen a coupla years ago.He is a character for sure. In his first Lawrence home he had a baby grand that he bought with the ambition of learning how to play it!! I wonder if he ever did? This is the first I have heard of him since and I am glad he has been OK.Up until now that is.But he is resilient(sp?) and I am sure he will cope just fine regardless of the joy this board finds in his hardship.

sourpuss 6 years ago

That is a fantastic picture. Kudos to the photographer! I'm sorry for the loss of the property. I hope the guy has somewhere to stay. I can definitely understand being ticked off.

redfred 6 years ago

sourpuss - Richard has been taking excellent phots for longer than I care to recall. He is one of the LJW'S best assets,

itsjustlindsay 6 years ago

Wow.. Some people are very cold hearted. Did ever occur to some of you that he may have PREFERED to live in a trailor? I grew up in the same mobile home area on the West side of the park.

He lived on the East side of the park and from my own personal experience, that particular side of the mobile home park was the better side to live in. Of course that was 7+ years ago but I still detour through there every now and again and it still looks the same as it did when I was growing up there.

And 90% of the people that lived there had chosen to live there.

Thinking_Out_Loud 6 years ago

Kudos to the firefighters who accept a risky job to help people in times of crisis.

Cristy White 6 years ago

look I knew Ben personally and he was not just a very good musician but a collector. He lost thousands and I mean thousands of dollars worth of stuff in this fire. he had three grand pianos in there, thousands of dollars worth of books, Amps,and microphones, speakers, swords, 500 gallon fish aquariums, recording devices and thats just to name a few of the items in there. It makes me sick to my stomach to see that people are making fun of this fire as Ben is a very good person and I know this devistated him allot more than he cares to show. His life was in that trailer. He spent several years collecting expensive antiques form all over Lawrence and surrounding area and is very well gifted at playing the piano. He spends allot of time and dedication his music and for all of you that posted a cruel haha comment think of this, it could of been you that was sitting back watching your entire life go up in flames!!!!! Its not so funny now, is it!!

Cristy White 6 years ago

wooden flea eater you are a moron and that trailor held evrything in he owned. You are a jerk he plays better music than you ever dreamed and for the one that said way to make mom and dad proud I have a feeling you are doug next door and although Ben had his problems with his parents he wouldnt of destroyed his entire life to spite them so you Doug are a moron too.

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