Friday, October 1, 2010

The Day the JunkYard Burned.......

It was a perfect day for a party!  The weather was great, the pool was clear and warm, the beer was on ice.  It was going to be a great party.  Jess and her new boyfriend, Kyle were planning to celebrate the 4th of July on July 5th with a bunch of their friends.  Jess still lived at home but her parents were out of town.  This added to the perfection of the day.

Jess and Kyle worked together to get the food going, people started arriving and the music was turned up loud.  In the pool were chicken fights, splash fights and diving competitions.  Kyle, who could not swim even got in the water for a bit.

Darkness started to fall and there was less swimming.  Kyle's friends, Tristan, Mike and Bobby pulled out fireworks.  Jess didn't want them to shoot them off, afraid that they would get in trouble.   Kyle told her not to worry about it, they knew what they were doing.  So Jess, went back to trying to enjoy the party.

Tristan shot one off that didn't go UP in the air like it was supposed to, instead it veered off over the neighbors fence and to the ground.  It didn't explode like the firework was supposed to.  Tristan and the others didn't think anything about it at the time.

A while later, they still had some fire crackers and noise makers when next door, flames suddenly shot up the side of the garage.  The neighbor that lived there ran out of his house and screamed to call the fire department.  Jess ran inside for the phone.  While on the phone she stood watching the flames rise along the side of the building.  She also knew she and everyone at the party were going to be in trouble.

The guys who were shooting the fireworks hid their supply and tried to pretend it didn't come from their yard.  They did their best to cover up the smell of gun powder and tried to pick up the scraps of exploded ordiance.

Then the fire trucks came.  There were 3 departments who responded to the scene.  Of course, they would respond because the garage that was on fire was part of a junkyard and who knew what chemicals and other automotive byproducts were there to catch fire.  It could blow at anytime!

Fortunately, the fire was quickly contained to a diesel fuel pump and the corner of the garage.  No major damage and no explosions other than from the fireworks.  And from the police officer who came to the party.

He walked up the driveway with an unexploded firework in his hand and demanded to see Jess's father.  "I know Jim wouldn't allow this kind of thing to happen so you get him here, NOW."

Jess's father was a former police officer for the township and still kept in contact with the current police officers.  Except this one didn't like her father.  Jess went into the house to call her parents home from Virginia Beach, she even picked up the phone to dial.  Then changed her mind.  We are all adults, most over 21.  Why can't we handle this with US and not involve my parents? 

Jess went out to the Officer and respectfully made her case.  "Officer, can you please just handle it without my parents.  They are over 5 hours away so if you want to wait for them to get here, that fine.  But we are all over the age of 18 and prepared to be adults about this."

While the officer wasn't happy about it, he also didn't want to wait around for 5 hours for her parents to get there.  He proceeded to take everyone's information from their drivers licenses as well as what they knew about the fire.  Most didn't know anything about it other than seeing flames and then watching the fire departments work.  That was their story and they were sticking to it!  The officer completed everything he needed to and the party broke up.  Jess and Kyle cleaned up, then Jess took Kyle home.

The next morning started with a visit to the police station.  Jess ratted out Mike and Bobby, which resulted in charges for them.  Jess also talked with the owner of the junkyard and offered to make restitution for the damages. 
Of course, Jess had to tell her parents what happened when they came home.  Jess cleaned the house and the pool area, there was no evidence of a party from the weekend.  When Jess told her parents, she made sure that her fahter was on the other side of the table from her and that she had a quick exit out the door.  Turns out that exit was not necessary, he father laughed when she told the story.  Her father had been a borderline juvenile deliquent in his youth so he was a little bit proud that his daughter was like him.  Jess stood there with her chin on the floor in shock while he laughed.

Jess and the others made good on their promise of restitution, Mike paid his fines and the incident was put behind them.  Until Tristan dug up pictures all these years later!

Some of the names have been changed to protect the not so innocents!


  1. Scary back then but a great story now!

  2. whew...yeah i woulda freaked...almost as much as the night they (we) accidently burned down a porta potty...

  3. Oh,that was a good one! Memories,aren't they great.........later.

  4. Great story!!! Memories ARE great... years after.

  5. That's such a fun memory!! Glad it all turned out well!

  6. OMG! LOL, now THAT's one heckuva party!!

  7. I would like to exchange links with your site
    Is this possible?


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