Recovering from ‘unforgettable’ explosion, Guthrie starts fundraiser for victims’ families

WSMV's Michael Warrick reports.
Published: Jan. 27, 2023 at 10:12 PM CST
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Guthrie, KY. (WSMV) - After a chemical explosion killed two men in Guthrie, the small town has opened a way for people to donate to the deceased victims’ families.

Bryan Bonilla, 34, was killed when a tank carrying a chemical solution exploded Jan. 18 at the Quick Turn Anodizing facility in Guthrie.

Alex Wix, 21, died from his injuries Monday, officials confirmed.

Around Guthrie, the sudden explosion is still fresh on the minds of those who live and work in the center of town. Scott Marshall, a retired paramedic of more than 30 years, was one of the first people to respond to the scene.

“It will be long remembered in the history of Guthrie,” Marshall said. “We’ve had incidents before but this one, everybody heard it. Everybody felt it.”

Andrea Milkowski owns Longhurst & Ladell’s, a café and boutique in town. She watched as people from her business and neighboring businesses took water, towels, and other supplies to the scene - trying to help those injured.

“It was unlike anything I’ve ever seen. It was like everyone had a script and knew exactly what to do, but you can’t prepare for something like that,” Milkowski said.

Through the tragedy, she’s encouraged by how the community came to the aid of those who were hurt in the explosion. The three injured are recovering at home, according to a release by officials Wednesday.

“This is a blue-collar town. We’re a railroad town, and everybody just pulls together,” Marshall said. “There were Good Samaritans everywhere that day.”

According to Guthrie Main Street, donations for Alex Wix should be mailed with Wix’ name in the memo line, to:

Sellars Family Heritage

PO BOX 104

Westmoreland, TN 37186

Donations for Bryan Bonilla, should be mailed, with Bonilla’s name in the memo line, to:

Neal Tarpley Parchman Funeral Home

Attn: Andy Shemewell

1510 Madison Street

Clarksville, TN 37040