Historic Billy Webb Elks Lodge Devastated by Fire, Needs Help from Community

By Sue Stringer and Restore Oregon

Fire damage from Fire on September 11 at the Billy Webb Elks Lodge. Photo credit Restore Oregon

The following is a press release by Restore Oregon which includes the history of the Billy Webb Elks Lodge that sadly was the victim of a fire recently. The Eliot Neighborhood Association has donated funds to the Elks Lodge for restoration. We hope that others will join us in helping this organization restore the historic building that has meant so much to our neighborhood for so many generations.

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Fire in Eliot

By Jackie Sandquist

I froze as I looked at the building ablaze across the street. The crackling noise woke us up and the strange orange glow coming from the front of the house got us out of bed. Questions blazed through my head: Is that building really on fire? How can this be? What do we do? I felt its raging heat from a half block away as I frantically shut the windows that faced the five-story wall of flames. Right out there on NE Martin Luther King, Jr. Boulevard, one of the biggest of the four new apartment complexes was burning to the ground at four fifteen on a Thursday morning.

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Firefighters Raise Money for Displaced Residents

By Nancy Zimmermann Chung

Did you know that the Portland Firefighter’s Association is organizing a fundraiser for neighbors affected by the August 8 five-alarm fire on Martin Luther King, Jr. Boulevard? The fire reduced to rubble a 46-unit apartment building that was under construction, rendering uninhabitable some of the adjacent residential buildings in the process. Several of the tenants displaced by the fire do not have the financial means to rent a second apartment; some have found themselves with nowhere to sleep but the couches of friends.

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Five Alarm Rib Fundraiser

Portland chefs and firefighters will cook up a tasty rib dinner for you and your family on September 18, 4:30 p.m. to 8 p.m. at EaT Oyster Bar and Restaurant. For just $18 you’ll receive a firefighter’s plate of ribs and sides that will definitely fill you up. A healthy portion of each dinner sold will go towards folks directly impacted the by the five alarm fire in Northeast Portland last month.

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Community Preparedness

By Tim Cook

A street in Valdivia Chile after the large earthquake May 22nd 1960

The recent 5 alarm fire in our neighborhood reminds us of the importance of community and working together to improve emergency preparedness. Many who had to evacuate homes during the fire felt a sense of vulnerability, which sparked new discussions about individual resilience.

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Observing the MLK-Monroe Fire

MLK and Monroe Fire
KGW SkyCam view of the fire at MLK and Monroe

As the fire broke out on Monroe and MLK early Thursday morning much of the neighborhood became aware.  It may have been the heat, the flames, the sirens, the smoke, or a knock on the door.  Very few didn’t know about it. 

This is my experience that morning.  It is nothing like those who lost their homes, but I thought I would share anyway.

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Fire Destroys Buildings

Flames engulfing building at MLK and Monroe. Photo from Portland Fire and Rescue.
Flames engulfing building at MLK and Monroe. Photo from Portland Fire and Rescue.

The 5 story apartment complex on the corner of Monroe and MLK was vacant and still under construction when fire broke out Thursday August 8th around 4:15 AM.  The 5 Alarm fire was considered one of the biggest in the city in recent history.  Fire trucks lined a closed MLK Blvd. for several blocks as 120 firefighters doused the blaze.

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