Poultry farm burns down, destroying dreams of Smith County family

(Courtesy: Wood family)

BRUSH CREEK, Tenn. (WKRN) – A Smith County barn went up in flames Friday morning and destroyed a popular family poultry business.

Poultry Hollow Hatchery is a total loss, according to owner Judy Wood. The short video above was shot the morning of the fire as Wood and her family looked over the damage.

Wood says she woke up a little after 4 a.m. Friday, hearing something that sounded like gunshots.

“I got up and saw the blaze. It was lit up like daytime. It was so horrible,” said Wood, her voice breaking up.

Wood called 911 as her son, daughter, and grandsons rushed to the barn to try and save some of the chickens, but the barn was engulfed in flames.

Out of 2,000 birds, including chickens, doves, quail and guineas, they managed to rescue only 100 layer chickens.

“There were baby chickens everywhere. It was horrible, said Wood.”

(Courtesy: Wood family)

All the equipment was gone, too. Her daughter had to buy a net to capture the birds they saved.

A fire inspector is scheduled to come out Tuesday to determine the cause of the fire. Wood thinks it may have been electrical. There were heaters in the barn.

Wood started the farm eight years ago. Her son and his family helped build the business. She says people needed a place to buy chickens they knew were fresh and disease-free.

It was more than a business to Wood. This message is posted on the Poultry Hollow website:

Judy wishes to thank all her customers for their support through the years. At this time there is no decision made about being able to rebuild. Judy is taking this very hard as Poultry Hollow is much more to her than just a business. She lost about 2000 of her “kids” and the entire business

Wood says the business is under-insured. She will collect only $15,000 for the barn and $1,000 for all the birds that were lost.

A GoFundMe page has been set up to help pay expenses and outstanding bank loans.

(Courtesy: Wood family)

Judy Wood is not sure what she’ll do next.

“You live and learn,” she said. “This is a hard way to learn.”

Related: Last winter, News 2 visited the Poultry Hollow Hatchery to find out what safeguards they were taking to prevent their flock from getting bird flu. Click here to see video of the farm.