GATHERED FOR A SPECIAL PRESENTATION during the Monday evening Owosso City Council meeting at city hall were (from left) State Rep. Ben Frederick, Owosso Fire Dept. Lt. Brian Matthies, Owosso Public Safety Chief Kevin Lenkart, Nicole Miller, Heather Scollon, Owosso Twp. Battalion Chief Michael Thornburg, Corunna-Caledonia Fire Captain Ray Murawa and Owosso Fire Dept. Captain Rick Brewbaker.

   The special presentation, organized by Chief Lenkart, was to honor the firefighters, community members and businesses that had come together during the former Jumbo’s Burger Bar fire on Thursday, April 1.

   Residents Nicole Miller and Heather Scollon had wanted to help, so the girls organized a shopping spree to the Owosso/Corunna Meijer to purchase food and beverages for the firefighters – spending their own money in support of crewmembers.

(Independent Photo/Karen Mead-Elford)

   Owosso Public Safety Chief Kevin Lenkart (above photo), along with Owosso Mayor Chris Eveleth, State Rep. Ben Frederick and council members, offered their gratitude to all of the firefighters that assisted in the former Jumbo’s Burger Bar fire during a presentation at city hall on Monday, April 5 during the regular council meeting. Firefighters from the Owosso Fire Department, Owosso Charter Township Fire Department, Corunna-Caledonia Fire Department and Perry Fire Department came together to combat the Jumbo’s Burger Bar fire on Thursday evening, April 1 in downtown Owosso. The building had been vacant at the time of the fire – and the structure was lost – but the firefighters successfully fought the blaze over a lengthy 24-hour period, preventing the spread of the fire to nearby buildings and keeping the public safe.

   “While this loss is really tragic for the community, with so many memories wrapped up, so many good times with friends and family, again, these are the people that made sure we lost only one structure and that there were no lives lost,” shared Eveleth. Jumbo’s had been a longtime popular restaurant and bar. It closed in March 2019.

   On hand for the recognition were Owosso Twp. Battalion Chief Michael Thornburg, Corunna-Caledonia Fire Captain Ray Murawa, Owosso Fire Dept. Captain Rick Brewbaker and Owosso Fire Dept. Lt. Brian Matthies.

   Also honored with a special presentation that evening, were residents Nicole Miller and Heather Scollon – two girls who stepped up to help in a very special way. A Letter of Commendation shared from Chief Lenkart stated, “On behalf of the Owosso Fire Department, I would like to extend our great thanks and deep appreciation to Nicole Miller and Heather Scollon. On April 1, 2021, Nicole Miller and Heather Scollon learned a longtime Owosso business, Jumbo’s, was on fire. The fire had consumed the entire structure. Four area fire departments with over thirty firefighters responded to help extinguish the fire.

   Nicole and Heather went to an area grocery store and with their own money purchased food and drink to distribute to the firefighters. Firefighting is a hot, dangerous job and the Owosso Fire Department is thankful to have friends and neighbors like you, who are willing to come to our aid in an emergency situation.”

   Miller and Scollon had felt compelled to offer the firefighters whatever relief they were able, spending a considerable amount of their own money to supply crewmembers with food and beverages they purchased from Meijer.

   Everyone in attendance received a key to the city from Mayor Eveleth. Council members offered plenty of applause in a display of gratitude.

    Other acknowledgments were offered to Owosso Department of Public Works employees, city staff and the Corunna Fire Dept. Auxiliary. Several local businesses stepped up to help the firefighters, as well, including Wendy’s, Domino’s Pizza, Joe-Lee’s Crosswind Café and the Owosso/Corunna Meijer. Some city staff and Owosso Public Safety employees worked through the majority of the 24-hour period to ensure the safety of the community.

   Mayor Eveleth recognized Chief Lenkart’s considerable contribution in fighting the fire, too.

   The cause of the fire remains under investigation – and may never be known since the structure was completely destroyed.

Owosso Offers Gratitude to Area Firefighters and Others was last modified: April 14th, 2021 by Karen Elford