Nursing home residents return

FLORENCE, Wis. – Residents of Golden Living Center in Florence have returned to the facility after a Sunday evacuation due to fire. The north wing remains closed.

Executive Director Sue Mattson said everyone was back in their rooms by 5:30 p.m. Tuesday.

“All the residents are back, and everyone is happy to be home,” she said.

She added that the north wing is being repaired and renovated. That area of the building is currently closed.

On Sunday afternoon, Golden Living Center staff and all 41 residents were moved to a pre-established shelter at Florence Elementary School after a fire began in the attic area of the facility.

Florence County Sheriff Jeff Rickaby said his department was notified of the fire at 2:22 p.m.

According to Rickaby, initial investigation revealed the source of the fire as a possible lightning strike. Fire suppression systems were activated, and the flames were quickly extinguished by firefighters.

Approximately 30 percent of the building sustained interior structural damage, Rickaby said, and there was some smoke damage throughout.

Evan Reid’s e-mail address is