Flames total Paris Motel
By By Janet Little Cooper
The top floor of the Paris Motel is in ruins following a Saturday morning blaze.
The Atmore Fire and Rescue Department received a call at 6:50 a.m. Saturday reporting the blaze.
Upon arrival firefighters found the upstairs portion of the two-story building engulfed in flames.
"The fire was determined to have started in an upstairs bedroom," Atmore Fire &Rescue Department chief Gerry McGhee said. "The bedroom was unoccupied at the time of the fire."
The state fire marshal was called in to investigate Monday. According to McGhee the fire marshal's conclusion was that the fire was electrical.
"Our boys did a fantastic job containing the fire," McGhee said. "They were able to hold it to the second floor. I could not have asked for a better response from my men. The call came in during shift change, so I had 19 firemen report to the scene. Even though they contained it, the fire totaled the top floor. My hat goes off to all of them."
The Paris Motel, owned by Atmore resident Alice Salter, closed its doors in September of 2005 according to Salter's nephew, Wiley Tait.
Salter opened the motel in Atmore more than 30 years ago offering nightly, weekly and monthly rentals to tenants in as many as 10 different rooms.
Tait and his wife Vivian began operating the lounge located inside the motel in 1997 for Salter. According to Tait, Salter had between eight or nine tenants at that time.
The last known business license was purchased in 2004, according to city records. Rescue personnel notified Tait of the fire Saturday morning.