(WMC-TV) - A roof collapsed at an adult care center in Crenshaw, Mississippi, Monday afternoon, trapping the city's assistant fire chief under the debris.
After a period of heavy rain, the roof at We Care Community in Panola County cracked and eventually collapsed.
According to Daniel Cole with Mississippi Emergency Management Agency, the people inside the facility could see the roof cracking and were able to get outside before it collapsed.
An employee, who happens to be Crenshaw's assistant fire chief, had just entered through a side door when debris fell on top of him. He was taken to The MED by ambulance. According to Cole, the fire chief suffered injuries to his head, shoulder, and arm. He was responsive as he was being taken to the hospital.
"It was pretty bad, the rain really was the main point right then," said Crenshaw resident Peggy Parrish.
"What we're thinking is the top came in, causing that partial wall to collapse," said Crenshaw Mayor Oscar Barlow. He believes the building's structure shifted when the roof caved in.
Mayor Barlow says Assistant Fire Chief Hubert Joyner was walking along the sidewalk when bricks fell on top of him.
"We had to put him on a board and move him because more debris was falling," said the mayor. "For me it was painful, just sad to see him laying there. We were just helpless, couldn't do anything."
The adult care center used to be a movie theater, but for years, it has provided hot meals, activities, and a home away from home for the senior citizens of the Crenshaw community.
"This adult day care serves, I don't know how many elderly people," explained the mayor. "The owner works hard to provide for the people."
Barlow continued, "If it can't be repaired, it'll be a loss to the town and community."
There is no estimate at this time on what it is going to take to repair the structure, or whether that is an option.
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