42 Horses Die in Minnesota Barn Fire

Sunday morning, Scot Stelter received the call that horse owners dread: the barn where six of his Quarter Horses were temporarily housed, along with 36 others, was on fire. The horses were trapped inside and died.

Burnt barn at R & J Arena

The barn at R & J Arena.

"All you could see was the air filled with smoke," said Stelter of the scene when he arrived. "Without air respirators, there would be no way to get close."

The horses were at the R & J Arena in Verndale, Minn., for a team penning and ranch sorting event. Because of the cold weather, fewer horses than normal attended, and all of the horses at the show were in one barn.

Wadena County Sheriff Michael Carr reported that the cause of the fire is still under investigation, but said foul play is not suspected.

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Jennifer Walker

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