Officials release results of investigation into Mayflower restau - WVVA TV Bluefield Beckley WV News, Weather and Sports

Officials release results of investigation into Mayflower restaurant fire

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BLUEFIELD, Va (WVVA)-- After the popular restaurant, The Mayflower, burned down last October, the question has been, what caused the blaze?

After the fire broke out, people in the area told us they're devastated by the loss of the restaurant.

It was a gathering place for many and people say it also supported the area economy.

WVVA spoke with Special Agent John Santolla of the Virginia State Police Tuesday.

He says the cause has been ruled "undetermined" because investigators could not rule out the gas furnaces located near the dining area, where the fire burned hottest. 


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BLUEFIELD, Va. (WVVA)-- After a popular restaurant, goes up in flames, people in Bluefield, Virginia and the surrounding community are in shock.

The Mayflower restaurant in Bluefield has been an icon in the area for nearly two decades.

People tell WVVA it's a gathering place on Sunday mornings, and a place to get a good meal, but now it's completely destroyed.

Investigators with the Virginia State Police are working to find the cause.

They can't rule out arson, but Special Agent John Santolla said it's not an official arson investigation as of Friday afternoon. When we spoke with Santolla, he was still at work on the property.

People like Darla Yates, who saw the blaze are now in mourning over the restaurant that she says helped the community so much.

"I saw an icon on fire [last night]," she said.  "[It] served the community with fundraisers. My little boy, he's 11. He's in tears because he was supposed to have a fundraiser here November 4th."

Other community members also sounded off about the damage at the restaurant, some even shedding tears when looking at the remains.

The restaurant's owners were too distraught to speak on-camera.

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BLUEFIELD, Va. (WVVA) - A longtime staple of Bluefield, Virginia, is gone this morning after being consumed by flames late Thursday night.

Police Chief Harry Cundiff said the first reports came in around 9:30 p.m. of a fire at The Mayflower restaurant -- about 30 minutes after closing time.

By the time first responders arrived on scene, the blaze had fully engulfed the building.

Crews worked for three hours to battle the blaze. Smoke was visible more than a mile away.

The cause of the fire remains under investigation.

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Firefighters and police were on the scene Thursday night as fire engulfed the Mayflower restaurant on Hockman Pike in Bluefield, Virginia.

Police Chief Harry Cundiff tells us the call came in around 9:30 this evening from someone who saw smoke coming through the windows, and when firefighters arrived the structure was fully engulfed in flames.

At this point investigators don't know the cause or where the fire started.

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