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January 29, 1978 - Image 2

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Publication:
Michigan Daily, 1978-01-29

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Page 2-Sunday, January 29, 1978-The Michigan Daily

Early morning fire claims 13
guests at Kansas City hotel

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (UPI)-A fire
early yesterday killed as many as a
dozen persons and forced scores of
others to flee barefoot and shirtless or
leap from the windows of the historic
Coates House, a 19th Century luxury
hotel now serving as a $12-a-week home
' for the elderly and transients.
Police revised the known list of dead
to nine Saturday afternoon, but firemen
continued to report 13, including two
bodies hanging from windows too
dangerous to approach.
A POLICE dispatcher said, "We're
counting what we can confirm, what we
have in the morgue and the two we can
-see in the windows. It's still too hot. We
can't get in."
Authorities said 34 persons were
missing and firemen feared as many as
30 bodies might still be in the
smoldering rubble of the downtown
hotel. Several of the victims leaped to
their deaths in attempts to escape
flames that spread rapidly along ornate
woodwork in the structure. Some
leaped safely to firemen on ladders.
Bitter temperatures-the wind chill
factor registered minus 18-hampered

firemen and created additional har-
dships for many who escaped.
FIREMEN SAID they thought all but
six rooms in the five-story hotel were
rented, and 200 persons may have been
living there. The hotel had been inspec-
ted .frequently because of its age and
size, said fireman J. W. Sheil.
"They told me when I first started
this job to watch out for this rascal," he
said.
Kansas Citians and others across the
nation responded immediately to pleas
of assistance for those left homeless
and without belongings. The Salvation
Army, which took in about 125 sur-
vivors, set up a fund to handle
donations.
"I JUMPED out the window," said
Raymond Kelly, 33, who was grabbed
by a fireman on a ladder. "Two other
people jumped from where I did. They
went all the way down and were killed."

Kelly also saw a man with two babies
on the ledge of the fourth floor near his
room.
"I know they didn't make it. No way
he could jump with the kids. I could be
wrong. I hope so.
"THE FIRE was in my room. I woke
up and saw fire coming through the
door. I came out with one pair of pants.
Everything I have is gone. But I call
myself lucky. I jumped and I made it.
Two other persons jumped and
missed."
The hotel, registered as an historic
landmark, was constructed in the 1860s
and its basement was used as a stable
during the Civil War. President Grover
Cleveland later stayed at the hotel.
"It was a good hotel," said Henry
Glis, 49, who moved there in Septem-
ber. "It was old, but it was for poor
people and they liked it. Where else
could you get a room for $12 a week?"

The hours
are long,
but that's
O.K.,
the pay is
lousy.
But as a volunteer
you'll get to help America
stand a little taller. And you'll
stand a little taller yourself.
America needs your help or
we wouldn't bejasking. Your
community needs your help.
People 18 or 80: we don't care
as long as you do. VISTA is
coming alive again. Come alive
with us. VISTA. Call toll free:
800-424-8580. VISTA
A PublcSerice of
Thvs Newspaper c
( o The Adverisng Council

Saloons provd1e
friendly shelter
from the storm

By RENE BECKER
While most of the Midwest struggled
through the worst blizzard anyone
cares to recall, wise and warm Ann Ar-
borites found "shelter fromt the storm"
in the many drinking establishments
within walking distance of campus.
The volume of business varied from
place to place, but generally speaking
Ann Arbor bars were inundated with
customers.
"PHENOMENAL" was how staffer
Molly Trezise described business at
Dooley's. On the first day of the deluge,
Dooley's offered a "blizzard
special"-all drinks half price.
Trezise said the special was devised
to keep people in the bar once they drif-
ted in. With firece weather outside and
the easy prices inside, the offer proved
too much to resist.

"Thursday was packed," said
Yrezise. And the general ambience of
the crowd? "They were wild."
EATING WAS also an important part
of the "blizzard cocktail scene." Majid
Kamfiroozie, a chef at the Lamplighter
on East Liberty, said people weren't
drinking any more than usual but they
were eating more.
Many of the "serious" drinkers found
refuge at the Del Rio on Washington St.
Jim Benham of the Del Rio staff called
the bar a "haven in the storm."
Benham said many employes had to
work overtime to fill in for staffers who
couldn't make it in. "Even the owner
cleaned the bar because the janitor
lives out of town."
MAXINE BIWER, bartender at Mr.
Flood's Party, said many customers
were skiing in.
Bpt not all saloon keepers enjoyed
windfall profits from the storm. Several
bars were forced to close because of the
lack of customers.
Ann Arbor's landmark Pretzel Bell
was forced to shut down. Owner Clint
Castor said last Thursday was "the fir-
st time we were forced to close since
Prohibition."
"We closed on Thursday because we
couldn't get any merchandise or any
people to come down," said Castor.
THE STORM also closed the Second
Chanceeon East Liberty. "We didn't
have enough people (workers),"
Second Chance manager Dave Rogers
said.
The rock and roll bar reopened
Friday morning but business was off,
Rogers said. "On Friday night we did
about a third of the business we expec-
ted to do."
Bad road conditions also closed down
the new night club in town, The Earle,
on Washington St. Manager Mary Lou
Webster said, "Staffers live out of town
and couldn't get to work."
ANOTHER PROBLEM caused by
bad roadswas lack of deliveries.
Dooley's ran out of hot dogs and
Molson's beer, the Lamplighter ran out
of pizza cheese, Flood's is still running
low on draught beer, and Cottage Inn
ran out of eggs.
Deliveries have started up again and
drastically diminished supplies are
slowly being replenished. Most taverns
have reopened and will try to handle all
the customers that come their way
despite shortages.
Benham at the Del Rio was confident
about his supply. "We'll be able to get
all the drunks as drunk as they want to
be," he said.

Milliken goes military AP Photo
Gov. William Milliken arrives at his Lansing office via a National Guard armored personnel carrier. Milliken has asked for
federal help to dig the state out of the snow.

Few students straggle to
class, city road's clogged

(Continued from Page 1)
the State Highways and Transportation
bureau said all major roads in the area
were open.
"We are in snow condition red, and
have been since Wednesday," Johnson
said. "We're struggling to clear all the
county roads. So far our major p. oblem
is the wind and abandoned cars."
THE CITY Department of Streets
and Traffic personnel had a more dif-
ficult time with the snowy obstacles.
John Robbins, Department Director
said that all city streets would not be
cleared until sometime next
week-provided the wind dies down and
predictions for more snow prove false.
"The city is operating largely with
rented equipment and contractors,"
Robbins said. "We've rented five
graders and four front-end loaders to
clear the snow." The city's trucks are
not big enough to handle the snow ac-
cording to Robbins.
"WE SHOULD have all the residen-
tial areas cleared out by today," he
said. "Tomorrow we should start
hauling out the downtown area. We've
hired an outside contractor to clear
away that snow.''
A spokesman for the Bureau of
Towed Cars said the department's of-
ficers have been "awfully busy" get-
ting cars towed away and processing
the paperwork. "The cars can stay
where they are until the plows come
through," he said. "Then they call us,
and we haul them away. I've got a book,
two feet thick with towed cars. It's
driving me crazy." He predicted that

towing operations would be completed
by Wednesday or Thursday. I
AATA Director Carl Gunther said the
AATA buses were running on all main
routes. "We've had buses running
every 30 minutes between the hours of 8
a.m. to 6 p.m.," he said.
MANY AREA businesses remained
closed. Stores, bakeries and bars ex-
perience difficulties getting supplies
and have shut down for the duration of
the storm. Other restaurants and
businesses are cutting back on menu
choices.
Dennis Seris, spokesman for the Real
Seafood Co. estimated the restaurant's
business was off considerably. The
restaurant is open during regular hours
but the seafood market is closed due to
lack of supplies. "We would have done
triple the amount of business," he
remarked. "Maybe it will pick up
tonight."

Pizza Bob's owner reported business
booming, although they too have ex-
perienced difficulty in obtaining sup-
plies. "We've been busier than heck,"
he said. "We're running out of some
supplies now.
Michele Golden, a Food Mart em-
ploye reported brisk business and sup-
ply problems. "We've had trouble get-
ting stuff. Most of our supplies are run-
ning out."
Business during the past few days has
been extremely slow, but nights have
been busier than normal, said George
Panon, owner of the Brown Jug. The
Brown Jug has avoided some of the
problems other businesses have
developed and picked up their supplies
from the wholesalers. Panon registered
some apprehension concerning the
coming week. "We've got, to get ready
for next week. There's going to be
another blizzard. We've got to get'
enough supplies."

LA Snatoa

Group subpoenaed
in King investigation

T4

w

Shetlands
eel,

KA fn

IVIII Udin

ABE MG

WASHINGTON (AP)-The House
assassinations committee has sub-
poenaed J. B. Stoner and several
associates of his National States Rights
Party for its investigation of the mur-
der of Dr. Martin Luther Kind Jr., a
congressional source said yesterday.
The source, who declined to be iden-
tified, said the committee wants to
question Stoner about his assertions
that an FBI informant offered him
$25,000 to have King assassinated and
$2,000 to blow up a church in Bir-
mingham, Ala.
The source said the panel also wants
to learn more about Stoner's activities
with the party and his relationship with
James Earl Ray, who pleaded guilty to
killing King and whom Stoner represen-
ted as an attorney, and Ray's family.

The investigators want to find out
whether Stoner's activities "are in any
way directly connected with the
assassination of Dr. King," the source
said.
Stoner was indicted recently on a
charge of dynamiting a black church in
Birmingham in 1958. He pleaded in-
nocent and was set free on bond while
awaiting trial.
The source said the committee sub-
poena has been prepared and approved.
But Stoner had notreceived it by late
yesterday.
The source also said the committee
was subpoenaing several other people
associated with the National States
Rights Party, including Dr. Edward
Fields, who has edited the party's
newspaper. The source did not identify
the others.

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