MERCER — Pieces of the charred roof and ceiling continued to fall Monday morning into what was left of Pick & Paws Collectibles on U.S. Route 2 after fire gutted most of the building Saturday night.

Business owners Rick and Lynn Doane picked through the rubble Monday, salvaging what they could of the business they opened in 2003. The contents of the shop were not insured.

They said their daughter, son-in-law and newborn child were in a mobile home behind the building when the fire started. They escaped unharmed and called 911.

“We had antiques. It was a combination of new and old. The building’s gone. In fact, we’re just waiting for the rest of the roof to come down now,” Rick Doane said outside the shop Monday morning.

Another business, Homes & More, a woodworking company, occupied two-thirds of the building, which is where investigators think the fire started.

Sgt. Kenneth Grimes of the state Fire Marshal’s Office said the cause of the fire is undetermined, but he said it was not suspicious. He said the fire appeared to have started in the center portion of the long, single-story building, where electrical equipment was.

He said the building owner Scott Howard Sr. was partially insured, but it was unclear Monday to what extent.

Capt. Steve Ireland, training and safety officer for the Norridgewock Fire Department, said he counted about 26 firefighters at the scene after the fire was reported at 10 p.m. Crews also were sent from Skowhegan, Madison, Smithfield and New Sharon. No injuries were reported

Water to fight the fire was shuttled from nearby Mercer Bog, according to Ireland.

The Doanes said they will try to reopen the business. In the meantime, they will store some of the items at their home in Mercer.

“We’ve got to — this was our income,” Lynn Doane said. “It’s what we lived on.”

Doug Harlow — 612-2367

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