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Fire causes 'extensive' damage at Oakland Hills Country Club

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Posted at 2:54 PM, Feb 17, 2022
and last updated 2022-02-17 17:52:09-05

BLOOMFIELD TOWNSHIP, Mich. — Authorities in Michigan say the fire that swept through the Oakland Hills Country Club outside Detroit on Thursday has caused "extensive" damage.

Officials say the fire started around 10 a.m., with the roof of the clubhouse collapsing around 11 a.m.

Multiple fire departments responded to the scene, including Farmington Hills, Rochester Hills, Southfield, Madison Heights, Waterford, Bloomfield Township and Franklin.

Officials say there are still active fires that they are working to put out, which are being made difficult by the weather conditions.

PHOTO GALLERY: FIRE AT OAKLAND HILLS

Officials say no there were no injuries in the fire.

Firefighters worked to save some items.

"They pulled that memorabilia out and handed it off to the club members at the front door," Bloomfield Township Fire Chief John LeRoy said.

7 Action News saw two women embracing and sobbing on the sidewalk.

They worked at the Oakland Hills Country Club since 1977. Through tears, one of the women said: “That is my home burning. Everyone who works there is family. That is our home.”

“My first thought is the history of the club. Buildings can be rebuilt but you can’t rebuild the memorabilia that they might have lost. That building is a huge part of our golf history with the displays of the champions and the championships they’ve had. They will rebuild a great new clubhouse, but they can’t rebuild all those things they’ve lost. It’s unbelievable,” said Andy North in a statement.

North won the 1985 U.S. Open at Oakland Hills.

Thursday afternoon, the United States Golf Association tweeted out their support:

"Our thoughts are with our friends at @oaklandhillscc. Most importantly, we are relieved to hear that no one was injured. Along with so many others in the golf community, we have special memories at this storied venue and look forward to making more with them in the coming years."

The club is among the most historic in Michigan and is more than 100 years old.

It opened in 1916 and had hosted more than a dozen major championships in that time on its South Course.

Recently, the South Course underwent a massive restoration project and just reopened to the members in the summer 2021.

Gil Hanse led the restoration with the hopes of bringing major championships back to the club.

It last hosted a major when Padraig Harrington won the 2008 PGA Championship.

It also hosted the 2004 Ryder Cup.

Recently, the United States Golf Association announced Oakland Hills would host the U.S. Women’s Open in 2031 and 2042.

Staff writers at WXYZ first reported this story.