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North Huntingdon Township dry-cleaner says he'll rebuild after fire

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Firefighters from fire departments in Westmoreland and Allegheny county attempt to extinguish a fire at The Joseph Krow dry cleaning company at 11055 Parker Drive in North Huntingdon Township Sunday evening. Ronald Vezzani Jr.
Tuesday, Nov. 13, 2012, 3:56 a.m.

The owner of a North Huntingdon Township dry-cleaning business that was destroyed by fire Sunday night has vowed to rebuild as authorities investigate the cause of the blaze.

“In the wake of the unfortunate events that transpired, the Joseph Krow Co. is committed to providing uninterrupted service to our customers by partnering with local affiliates during the time we rebuild,” owner Steven Rudick said Monday afternoon. “The Joseph Krow Co. is proud of the impact it has on the region as one of the largest employers, and is looking forward to welcoming its experienced team members back to service our customers.

“We are blessed that there were no injuries, and very thankful to the men and women who fought this fire. We truly appreciate the continued support of our customers and community,” Rudick said.

The company employs about 175 people and offers specialty cleaning and repairs for leathers, suedes, furs, wedding gowns and other garments.

Officials reportedly deemed the facility at 11055 Parker Drive a total loss. Insurance adjusters were on the property Monday afternoon, but declined comment citing business policy.

Firefighters were called to the building at about 8:20 p.m.

The metal-sided building also housed another business, ImageFIRST, which obtains orders for Joseph Krow. Krow also provides laundry and dry-cleaning services for hospitals and health care faciklities in the area.

John S. Calio, a driver for ImageFIRST, said he found out about the fire when he showed up for work Monday morning.

“I didn't see any flames, (only) smoke,” Calio said. “I really had no idea. You could tell there was something on fire, but I couldn't tell it was this building here. As I parked my vehicle I started to see employees coming in, and they had no idea either.”

Calio said the businesses were always busy. He said he doesn't know what will happen now.

Rudick said it is too soon to determine when everything will be up and running.

Former Joseph Krow employee A.J. Rosenberg said he came to the building on Monday because family members still work there.

“I'm shocked,” Rosenberg said. “I couldn't believe it when I first heard.”

The smell of burned materials still permeated the area Monday afternoon.

Trib Total Media news exchange partner WPXI reported that, according to investigators, the fire may have started in a maintenance room.

Michael DiVittorio is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-664-9161, ext. 1965, or

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