Gordon rallies to support family who lost 2 children in house fire

Proceeds will help the family build a new home.

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A fundraiser will be held Saturday, March 13 at the Buckhorn Bar and Grill in Gordon for a local family who lost two children in a fatal house fire in February.

The children’s father, Mark Denhartog, is the kitchen manager at the Buckhorn. Owner Jodi Rose said the family is holding it together following the loss of Phoebe and Thatcher, ages 10 and 13, but it’s rough.

“I think at this point they’re just trying to get through the funeral and go from there,” Rose said.

Rose has known the family for about four years. Although there's nothing she can say to ease what they're going through, she wanted to support them.

“Every time I ever need anything, Mark’s the guy that’s there. That’s it. That’s all there is to it,” Rose said. “They’re just the kind of people that when you need something they would take the shirt off their back and give it to you.”


The fire was reported at 4:45 a.m. Feb. 20 at 6901 Semrad the town of Minong. Initial reports said the house was on fire and two people were still inside. The single-family residence was engulfed in flames when firefighters arrived, according to Minong Fire Chief Jay Barrett.

With assistance from the Wascott and Gordon fire departments, firefighters extinguished the blaze and located the victims. Minong Ambulance, Washburn County Sheriff’s Department and Washburn County Coroners Office also assisted at the scene. The cause of the fire is still under investigation.

Pam Boettcher of Gordon is helping collect and organize silent auction items for the event. Pulling together is what Gordon does, she said. Every business and individual Boettcher reached out to has been quick to support the family.

“When times get tough, people become their best,” Boettcher said.

Rose said no clothing donations are needed following a huge community response. A meal train that was set up for the family was also shut down due to overwhelming support.

Funds raised from the Gordon event will be put into an account for the family to rebuild their home. It will kick off with an online auction Thursday, March 11 on the Buckhorn Bar and Grill Facebook page. The March 13 event at the Buckhorn will include Chinese and silent auctions from 1-5 p.m., food sales from noon to 6 p.m. with 100% of the money going to the family, a 5:30 p.m. dessert auction and 50-50 raffles.

Additional items are being sought for the auctions. Email Boettcher at to donate. Financial contributions can be made at the Buckhorn, 9696 E. County Road Y, or by contacting Rose on the business’ Facebook page.

Maria Lockwood covers news in Douglas County, Wisconsin, for the Superior Telegram.
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