Landmark Hotel Destroyed

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ELDRED TOWNSHIP -- A landmark bar and restaurant in the Poconos is now a pile of rubble.

Flames tore through the 57 Hotel in Kunkletown around 3 a.m. Wednesday.

State Police Fire Marshals spent the morning and afternoon digging through debris after a fire destroyed the 57 Hotel.

The hotel is a bar and restaurant with six apartments on the second floor.

According to neighbor Carol Babcock, it was a landmark in the area for decades.

"There`s going to be a lot of people who are really truly going to miss this place. People got together for parties, Christmas parties," said Babcock.

The Kunkletown Assistant Fire Chief said the blaze quickly spread through the old building.

He adds that their biggest challenge was getting the water to put out the blaze.

"We had problems getting water to the scene, because of the lack of depth of the stream which is right here. So we had to tanker in water, we had to call 15 companies with tankers," said Assistant Chief Lou Salerno.

The fire marshal believes the blaze started in the front office area of the business. Then the flames spread over to the restaurant and to the apartment area above.

Four people were asleep at the time and all of them got out safely. Two had to make a daring escape.

The Fire Marshal said one man in his seventies jumped from the roof to get away from the flames.

He`s being treated at Pocono Medical Center.

Frank Dorshimer, 80, is another tenant who had to escape the fire.

"It was real hot," said Dorshimer.

Dorshimer said he has trouble walking and uses a cane.

He said escaping this fire was a challenge, and he's glad he made it out alive.

"I feel lucky," said Dorshimer.

Frank was with his friend, Wanda Dowling, who`s husband owns the place.

She says looking at the pile of what used to be a landmark is upsetting.

"It was tough watching the flames consume the place. It's tough for me to talk about it," said Dowling.

The fire marshal ruled the fire undetermined because there was too much damage.