The Boyle County Fire Department was back at a Perryville horse farm Monday, combing through the ashes of a barn where 19 Saddlebreds died early Saturday after a blaze destroyed the massive structure.
The fire department had not determined a cause. Investigators had few leads as of Monday afternoon, Boyle County Assistant Fire Chief Paul McCrystal said. McCrystal said that all 19 of the horses had been accounted for and that they probably died of smoke inhalation.
The fire at 1701 Mitchellsburg Road was reported at midnight Friday by a man who saw flames when he drove past the farm, McCrystal said. The man woke the trainer, John Gregory, and called 911.
According to McCrystal, the horses are owned by various people who brought their Saddlebreds to be trained by Gregory, who he said is devastated by the weekend tragedy.
McCrystal, who lives only 3 miles from the scene, said he could smell the smoke from his house. When the fire department got to the barn, "it was fully involved," he said, "and the flames were coming through the roof and it was about to fall in."
Twenty-seven firefighters responded to the blaze at the 250-by-100-foot barn.
Crews battled the fire for about five hours. One firefighter had to be taken to a hospital for minor injuries. He was treated and released.