Saturday, May 18 2013 7:54 AM EDT2013-05-18 11:54:38 GMT
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- Longtime golf commentator and 1964 U.S. Open champion Ken Venturi died today, and there's nearly no need to add to the tributes that surely will come, because there's a greatMore >>
Ken Venturi left a lasting memory in Louisville when he opened Hunting Creek Country Club's championship course with a record that still stands, and with a simple gesture to a sportswriter 25 years later.More >>
Follow the WDRB Newsroom, Reporters and Anchors.More >>
Tweets from the WDRB Newsroom, Reporters and Anchors.More >>
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- A meth lab explosion Thursday morning forced an elderly couple out of their home. Neighbors say the couple, Ralph Kircher, who is 94, and Esther Kirchner, 90, are in their nineties, and are considered the historians of their North Hite Street neighborhood in Clifton.
A couch and mangled debris stood in the yard of the home Thursday, and a sign warning of meth contamination was on the front door. The explosion blew out several windows of the home.
The Kirchners have lived in the house for 40 years.
Police say their 32-year-old grandson, John Kirchner, was operating a meth lab downstairs and it blew up. He went to the hospital with serious burns, and will face several charges when he gets out.
A neighbor, Bobby Douthitt, said Thursday, "I can see how they wouldn't know anything was going on downstairs because the gentleman was in a walker so he probably had a hard time going up and down the steps."
"Our hearts and prayers go out to them," Douthitt said. "I hope the best for them. I know the older gentleman, his goal is to hit 100. He's six years away from it, but it's going to be devastating to be that old and not even be in your own house any more."
Family members gathered some of the couple's belongings. The Kirchners will stay with family members for now.
Returning home will be difficult for them. Bill Everslage with Bio Meth Management said Thursday, "What we're dealing with is the residue or the contamination that is produced during the cook process and the risk associated with that is the long-term exposure to it."
The couple's home must deep cleaned and gutted of furniture, carpet, and even clothing before they can move back in.