NEW MADISON – The Kennedy family home of Kennedy Vineyards and Big Rack Brewery was lost when a three-alarm fire broke out on the property that has been described as a functioning vineyard and farm.
Fire departments from across Darke County joined in to help battle the blaze that destroyed the house that co-owner John Kennedy was born and raised in.
At approximately 3:45 p.m. Friday, emergency personnel from New Madison Fire, Tri-Village Rescue as well as numerous mutual aid companies were dispatched to Kennedy Vineyard, located at 3911 State Route 722, in regards to a working structure fire.
Upon arrival on the scene, a third alarm was struck, the second alarm being struck while en route, when heavy smoke and flames were reported coming from the front of the two-story farm house located on the property.
According to authorities on the scene, the fire quickly spread throughout the residence, eventually over taking the entire structure before the fire was able to be knocked down and brought under control.
“It happened so quickly,” Louisa Kennedy, co-owner and wife of John Kennedy, said. “It just happened way too quickly. My daughter was in the house when it started. She came running out to me in the barn and told me there was smoke and fire in the front of the house. It happened so fast.”
“It’s a total lost,” John Kennedy added. “These old wooden farm houses just go so quickly. Nobody was hurt; that’s the important thing. We lost our dog, but everyone is safe.”
The cause of the fire is undetermined at this time and will remain under investigation by the New Madison Fire Department.