Riley's Irish Pub building collapses in Lexington

Friday, August 2, 2013
Rubble is strewn onto the sidewalk and part of Main Street in Lexington after Riley's Irish Pub collapsed (Charles Dunlap/The Concordian)

Shock and surprise were on many Lexington residents' lips Thursday when the Riley's Irish Pub Building collapsed early that morning. Even more shocking, the owner of the building, Katherine Van Amburg, 69, lost her battle with cancer mere hours after the building collapsed.

Employees of Riley's were in the building Tuesday removing equipment, and moving it to their temporary location. Equipment was moved because a wall of the building started buckling a few weeks previously. Several years ago a car ran into the building. Repairs were made, but the structural damage was done.

Many residents were disheartened by the building's collapse.

"It's sad to see old buildings go," commented one resident.

Another resident lamented the loss of a half-circle stained glass window that was on the building's front facade. Every person present were very complimentary and positive about Van Amburg and the wonderful atmosphere of her restaurant.

Owners of the adjacent building and construction professionals were assessing the damage Thursday morning. No one was in the building when it collapsed.

More information to follow...

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