When the Gong Rings
A Fire History of Charleston, Illinois

139.  FIRE LOG 1966

 

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MILLINER TELLS PRESS TAYLOR HALL FIRE RESULT OF PRANK

After initial investigation, Chief George Milliner said that progress was made in the investigation as to the cause of the fire which gutted one room in the (new) Taylor Hall on the EIU campus Monday, routing a number of students who resided there. The fire "was evidently encouraged by a huge amount of crumpled newspaper in the room. The room was occupied by Dee Lambert, 19, a sophomore from Kankakee, and Greg Lee, 18, a freshman from Casey. Milliner went on to say that one of the youths was in the room "when the fire broke out. He said the student went to get a fire extinguisher and when he returned the crumpled newspapers were blazing. The building "was evacuated by the time the firemen arrived. Students on the floor of the fire "were relocated. One student who lived on the floor stated that he was returning to the room from practicing the violin at the Fine Arts Building. He said he said he felt "Kinda like Nero. But I fiddled, while Taylor burned!"

FIRE INVESTIGATION

A Fire investigation would be conducted by two state fire investigators on the campus.  The interior of Room 366 in the south wing of Taylor Hall was destroyed including all the furnishings.  The wardrobes and personal belongings of the two students were also destroyed. Some damage was done to the hallway and to a utility closet and the heat melted stereo records in a nearby room. No personal injuries resulted. Panty raids and campus water fights help to relieve pressure among students, but stuffing a room with wadded paper, and then having a resultant hazardous fire is a very serious matter, not to be treated lightly. The University and Fire Department hoped the fire would stop some of the pranks, false alarms and monkey business which could endanger life and property.

 




MEL TAYLOR ATTEMPTS TO FIGHT TAYLOR HALL
"PRANK" FIRE-- IS INJURED


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