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Jeff Strauss and his wife, Heather Hennemann-Strauss, bought the business more than 12 years ago. The location just celebrated its 40th year in business, he said.
“I need to focus on my employee family’s well-being and my customers,” Strauss said in a statement Sunday. “We are all devastated and heartbroken that this tragedy has occurred. At this time, we are not worrying about anything else. Everything else is just monetary and can be replaced. No one was hurt, and we will rebuild.”
Firefighters from more than 10 districts responded about 4:20 p.m. Saturday to battle the fire in below-freezing temperatures. Heavy smoke and flames could be seen coming from the automotive shop. Traffic on Route 14 was redirected, and fire crews stayed on scene until about 8 p.m.
No one was injured in the blaze, Crystal Lake Fire Rescue District said in a news release Saturday night.
The fire appears to have started in an office and spread, according to the release. The building was deemed uninhabitable until repairs are made.
There were no updates on the cause of the fire as of Sunday night, Crystal Lake Fire Battalion Chief William Whyte said.