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Leda Store building reduced to rubble in blaze

An early morning fire destroyed an unoccupied store building in the northern part of Halifax County Monday, according to fire officials.

Firefighters were called to 1001 Pumping Hill Road at 2:40 a.m. Monday for a report of a structure fire, said North Halifax Volunteer Fire Department Chief Ronnie Waller.

When firefighters arrived they found the unoccupied two-story Leda Store building fully involved, Waller said. A nearby resident had heard a popping noise, saw the fire and called 911, he added.

North Halifax VFD responded with four trucks and 16 firefighters, assisted by Liberty VFD with three trucks and seven firefighters, Triangle VFD with one truck and six firefighters and Brookneal VFD with two trucks and seven firefighters.

The Virginia Department of Forestry also assisted with a bulldozer to help prevent the fire from spreading to nearby property and woods.

No one was injured in the fire, and firefighters remained on the scene for approximately five hours.

Fire officials did not determine the cause of the fire, but Chief Waller said the building had no electricity and no heat.

Waller said the building belonged to Wayne Betterton and had been closed for several years. The chief said the building was not insured, and he estimated the loss at $35,000.

The cause of the fire is under investigation, according to Kirby Saunders, Halifax County Emergency Services coordinator.