Fire erupts during Memorial Day banquet at American Legion

It took more than 100 Philadelphia firefighters 2 1/2 hours to bring the fire under control; one firefighter suffered a minor injury


The Associated Press

PHILADELPHIA — Authorities say a blaze erupted during an annual Memorial Day banquet at an American Legion post in Philadelphia and required more than 100 firefighters to get it under control.

Banquet attendee George Mondschein tells The Philadelphia Inquirer that dinner was finishing up Monday when the commander announced that there was a fire in the dumbwaiter.

Philadelphia firefighters work to put out a fire at the American Legion Post 396, Monday. (Tom Gralish/The Philadelphia Inquirer via AP)
Philadelphia firefighters work to put out a fire at the American Legion Post 396, Monday. (Tom Gralish/The Philadelphia Inquirer via AP)

Fire Commissioner Adam Thiel says firefighters worked 2½ hours to get the blaze under control. He says the cause is under investigation.

Mondschein says his old Boy Scout troop held its meetings at the post. He says it kept him off the streets, but "now it's burned up."

He says he wishes he and the other attendees had grabbed mementos from the building on their way out.

Only a firefighter suffered a minor injury.

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Information from: The Philadelphia Inquirer

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