Sunday, August 7, 2022

Andersen Tower in Spanish Fork burns down

On Sept. 21, Wayne Andersen of Spanish Fork satbron a pile of bricks and watched as heavy machinery tore down what remained ofbrmore than 40 years of memories.

brbr

Just the day before, the Andersen Tower went upbrin flames with causes still unknown. And while the tower may have seemed tobrsome to be an old dilapidated building—perhaps even an eyesore— Wayne Andersenbrsays there was more than meets the eye.

brbr

The tower, he said, was built in 1967 by hisbrfather, Gerald Andersen, alongside his mother, Rhea Andersen, who owned abrfarming supply store. While many residents believe that it was a grainery, itbrwas actually fertilizing blending plant that at the time was the most modernbrone in the country.

brbr

“The tower was created to mix and hold fertilizerbrto be distributed to farms throughout the area,” Andersen said. “It was builtbrby my dad, Gerald Andersen through the Utah Cooperative Association, and wasbrthe most modern fertilizing blending tower in the country. It had 600 tons ofbroverhead storage capacity in eight separate bins, and could blend any mixturebrthat farmers wanted.”

brbr

According to Andersen, the plant was a greatbrservice to the community until the year 2000, when the family sold the propertybrand it ceased operation.

brbr

“The plant did a lot to benefit the area,” hebrsaid. “It served most of southern Utah County, Elberta, Sanpete and MillardbrCounty. The fertilizer we distributed improved crops in the area, and somebryears we distributed over 10,000 tons of fertilizer. It really was a landmarkbrin the community, started by a man—my dad— who had achieved the AmericanbrDream.”

brbr

Andersen spent 30 years working at the plant withbrhis father and brother, and said when he heard about the fire, he went over tobrwatch it. He said watching it burn was like watching years of memories go up inbrflames. Even so, he said he understands much of the community’s concern aboutbrthe old building.

brbr

“We understand that it was becoming a situationbrwhere the building was dangerous,” Andersen said. “We’d heard of kids goingbrinside it, and we didn’t want anyone to get hurt. We understood it was going tobrneed to come down sometime.”

brbr

Even as terrible and devastating as the fire was,brand how upset it made him and some members of the family to have it bebrdestroyed the way it was, Andersen can’t help but have a little smile at thebrway it went down.

brbr

“I went over to my parent’s house on the Sundaybrafter it happened,” he said. “My parents are 93- and 94-years-old, and when Ibrtalked to them, the one thing my dad said was that he remembered all it took tobrbuild it. I knew it was such a huge undertaking to build and that it hadbrprovided so many good years of service. The fact that it went up in flames ofbrglory just went to show how great it really was. The tower made a statementbrgoing in and going out.

brbrThe fire investigation for now is still ongoing,brand crews are working to clear the area to make it safe. (Brown is a Serve Daily contributor.)

Arianne Brown
Arianne Brown
Arianne Brown is a mom of nine who writes columns for many local and national publications. She currently resides in Payson, and enjoys looking for good happenings in her area and sharing them for others to read about. For more of her stories, search "A Mother's Write" on Facebook.
All ads_Page_18.jpg
All ads_Page_09.jpg
All ads_Page_14.jpg
All ads_Page_07.jpg
All ads_Page_04.jpg
All ads_Page_11.jpg
All ads_Page_05.jpg
All ads_Page_24.jpg
All ads_Page_23.jpg
All ads_Page_03.jpg
All ads_Page_12.jpg
All ads_Page_16.jpg
All ads_Page_15.jpg
All ads_Page_25.jpg
All ads_Page_09.jpg
All ads_Page_11.jpg
All ads_Page_10.jpg
All ads_Page_22.jpg
All ads_Page_19.jpg
All ads_Page_13.jpg
All ads_Page_02.jpg
All ads_Page_17.jpg
All ads_Page_01.jpg
All ads_Page_06.jpg
All ads_Page_10.jpg
All ads_Page_08.jpg
All ads_Page_21.jpg
All ads_Page_20.jpg
CLICK AD TO ZOOM

Get Our Newsletter!

Submit News

Visit our Forms to submit a recipe, obituary, contact us, or submit news. 

Related news