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State called in to investigate fire at Coven Clubhouse in Wellsville, firefighters praised for saving structure

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By JOHN ANDERSON

New York State Fire Investigators are assisting the Wellsville Village Police and Allegany County Fire Investigators to determine the cause of a fire at the Coven Clubhouse on Scott Avenue on Tuesday morning.

Fire investigators told the Wellsville Sun the fire was in two locations, a shed in the back of the motorcycle club and the front part of the structure.

The structure is intact and the upstairs bedrooms only had smoke and heat damage.

Allegany County Fire Services and Office of Emergency Management Director Jeff Luckey was at the scene later in the day. The fire started around 6 a.m.

Luckey said the Wellsville Volunteer Fire Department made a great save of the clubhouse.

“It was an amazing knockdown and save of the structure,” said Luckey, as the front end was fully engulfed when firefighters arrived. “They did a great job, and the club was able to go in and retrieve photo albums, there is no way to replace those.”

As for damage, Luckey said, “There is a shed on the back side damaged and the main clubhouse itself toward the road sustained the most damage. The main structure is still standing.”

The homeowners have been members in good standing. Michael Roncone is listed as the current owner with David Tortice. The sales for $1 or no money took place in 2019, 2015, 2013 and 2009.

“Michael was living there, but he is staying in an apartment in Buffalo while he is working.” Luckey said. “Michael lost a small amount of personal stuff. There are two other smaller rooms that had personal items belonging to others. I just did a quick walk-through and noticed there was no fire damage, just some high heat and melting of some stuff but the firefighters stopped the fire from spreading to the bedrooms.”

The state fire investigators have investigated two other fires in Allegany County since October of 2021. They were called in for the home explosion in Bolivar on Saturday, Oct. 2 that claimed the life of Mike Church. The other was after a fire on Pine Street on March 29 that claimed the life of Thomas Allen.

Here is our original reporting with photos and a video:

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