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Fire destroys 50 year old Miami business

A suspicious fire at a long-standing business in Northeast Oklahoma leaves nothing but ashes and broken windows in its wake.

"I can't believe it so I don't feel it yet..I will. But it hasn't soaked in that they'll be nothing left for me,” says Dena Ander.

Ander's Shoe Store has stood in Miami for more than 50 years.

"That's my whole life I've spent 85 years in that building,” says Dena Ander.

But around 2:30 Tuesday morning, it was destroyed by a fire.

"When the men first entered the building from Main Street they were able to get about half way back in the building and the fire seemed to be at the rear of the building is when the heaviest fire load was,” says Robert Wright.

The business has had other issues recently. Last Saturday and Monday, it was burglarized.

"Everything was torn up the glass was out of the window they had a heavy lock and they broke the glass and it just shattered all inside the store,” says Ander.

After they entered on Saturday, the thieves stole a set of keys which they used to re-enter the building on Monday to take more money. This has brought devastation on her, but her employees as well. Shirley Shelton has been working with her for more than 30 years.

"Well it's just my home, it's my second time here, really we are just always here,” says Shirley Shelton.

When asked if she will be rebuild Dena says she is unsure.

"I don't know if I have the strength or the know how...see business is different now the little independents are gone,” says Ander, "I had everything at one time I had everything shoes from the cradle to the grave when I say that's from infants to women's.”

The fire department was able to keep the fire inside of the business and there were no injuries. The fire marshal will continue to investigate the cause of the blaze.


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