Elkhart County man heartbroken after family’s century-old barn burnt down

Two barns within a five-mile radius catch fire just hours apart in Elkhart County.
Published: Oct. 4, 2021 at 7:12 PM EDT
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ELKHART COUNTY, Ind. (WNDU) - Two barns within a five mile radius caught fire just hours apart in Elkhart County over the weekend.

It’s raised level of suspicion that no one, including investigators, have been able to solve.

Just ask resident Garry Weybright and his wife, who’s barn, Elkhart County Centennial Barn, burned down Friday night just hours after coming home from a high school football game.

“I don’t know what woke her up but she saw a strange light outside the window. She got up and saw a man walking up our front steps towards the house and knocked on the door and by that time I wake up, I saw an inferno,” Weybright says.

However, nearly two hours earlier, Weybright says he saw another barn just minutes from his property, burning in flames.

“I was coming down US-6 around 10 o’clock, we passed the Enchanted Hills Road, I think that’s County Road 43, and I saw that barn burning,” Weybright said.

That barn was Bobeck Barn, which now stands in its own debris and becomes one of at least eight barn fires in Elkhart County since April.

“I knew there had been other barns fires happening all summer. And I knew we were vulnerable. We sit close to the road, our house is over here. They have access to the back side of the barn behind the side over there that we wouldn’t see them,” Weybright says.

But what haunts Weybright even more is what he does see...his century-old barn his father helped built now damaged and destroyed.

“This is like an icon for the family. My granddaughters in California, they call and they ball. It’s like losing his spirit. I can walk around that barn and still see dad walking out. It’s just crazy, it’s insane, it’s inhumane,” Weybright said with tears in his eyes.

It is a feeling Weybright hopes any possible arsonists will consider before burning down what the Weybright family have worked hard to build their entire lives.

“I hope they’re conscience gets a hold of them and they come forward and admit it and let’s get it stopped,” Weybright says.

Investigators say they have not determined a cause for either fire.

However, anyone with information is encouraged to contact the Elkhart County Sheriff’s Office, who released the following information on Monday:

The Elkhart County Sheriff’s Office is requesting the public’s assistance for any information regarding the following barn fires that have occurred in Elkhart County:

13394 CR 48 Syracuse: October 1,

2021 23350 CR 38 Goshen: April 13,

2021 25445 CR 38 Goshen: September 18,

2021 61524 CR 1 Elkhart: May 3,

2021 69576 CR 13 New Paris: April 13, 2021

62045 CR 9 Goshen: September 19, 2021

70383 CR 29 Syracuse: April 27, 2021

72648 CR 43 Syracuse: October 1, 2021

The Sheriff’s Office is also asking residents in the area of the fires to review any home security or surveillance footage for suspicious activity around the dates of the above listed fires. Anyone with any information is urged to contact Detective Bob Smith at 574-891-2352 or through our tip line, ECSDTipLine@elkhartcountysheriff.com or our Submit a Tip link: Submit a Tip - Elkhart County Sheriff’s Office. If you see suspicious activity, dial 911 and report it immediately.

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