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In a series of factors almost too compounded to be considered a coincidence, plenty of help arrived in time to quickly douse a fire at Midway Baptist Church on Oct. 27.
The Galax Fire Department received a call at 7 p.m. from a passerby who reported heavy smoke billowing from the sanctuary. On arrival, the firefighters found the fellowship hall on fire, according to a report from Fire Chief David Hankley.
Firefighters contained the fire to the kitchen area, Hankley said. It appeared that the fire started around an electrical outlet. The building suffered moderate fire damage, but significant smoke and heat damage.
The department was having family dinner at the firehouse when the alarm occurred, which allowed for a faster response — putting 26 firefighters and five trucks on the scene within six minutes of the alarm. “Normally, you might say a couple of coincidences helped reduce the damage, but with it involving a very loyal and active church, it may have been more of a divine intervention,” said Hankley.
On Monday, a message was posted on the Midway Baptist Church Facebook page by Pastor Myron Dalton concerning the fire. “Early reports are that if we rebuild, we will have to remove materials down to the foundational structure,” said Dalton.
However, he is not discouraged by the incident, “God can take the bad and make something good from it... We have a great family and I’m honored to be called your pastor. I will keep you posted on our work from here,” he said.