Leon Goodell’s business was helping anglers attract the big catch on the open sea waters.
Out of his shop at his residence on Private Road 4611, he ran Jandell Corporation and supplied fish oil, chum and other fishing accessories to Bass Pro Shops and distributors in Florida.
Sunday evening, that business was lost in a fire. The shop, a truck, fork lift, trailer and all his supplies were destroyed in a blaze that included several explosions as propane tanks ignited.
“I’m not going through that again,” said the 73-year-old Goodell about restarting the business.
Firefighters from Boyd, Paradise, Newark, Rhome, Cottondale and Springtown battled the blaze that was reported at 5:46 p.m.
“The structure was fully involved when we made the scene,” said Boyd Assistant Fire Chief Geary McDonald. “We made an initial attack and knocked it down.”
Firefighters were able to keep the fire from burning less than an acre of grass around the metal building.
They spent three hours and 33 minutes on the fire. That was after many of them were at a structure fire in Rhome earlier in the day.
Goodell said the only two appliances using electricity in the shop were a fan and refrigerator. He was last in the building around 12:30 p.m.
He said his neighbor told him about the fire.
“It probably didn’t go up real quick, but no one saw it,” Goodell said. “My neighbor came over and told me. When I saw it, it was flaming. There was no hope. I was able to move the tractor and that was about all.”
Goodell bought fish oil in bulk and bottled it in gallons, half gallons and quarts, then sold it to his distributors for anglers to use to make chum. He also made it himself for distribution along with chum dispensers.
He had been in business for 10 years, with Bass Pro Shops, the Springfield, Mo., outdoors giant, becoming one of his biggest customers.
“We have a contract with Bass Pro, and they give us an order every two weeks,” Goodell said. “I’ve got an order in my office that is supposed to be shipped this coming Friday. I don’t know what they are going to do. They will probably cause me all kinds of grief because I can’t fill that order.
“One of our biggest customers in Florida buys it by the pallet load.”
Goodell filled his tanks with 6,000 gallons of fish oil in the past two weeks.
Saturday and Sunday, he worked from 2 a.m. to noon to fill orders.
“With gallon bottles with six in a box, I had four big pallets ready that I was going to ship tomorrow,” he said.
Hot and tired at 12:30 p.m., he left the truck that he had unloaded pallets from in the morning parked next to the shop. It was lost in the fire along with a fork lift that he had owned for a month.
Upon delivery of his remaining supply of fish oil, Goodell was considering selling or closing the business. The fire brought it to a close a month earlier.
“When I got the last order of oil, I said this is the last truck load that I’m going to buy,” he said. “I was going to notify Bass Pro this fall that I’m going to be out of business.”