Earlier this month, a fire claimed a historic garage on the Osborne farm as well as one Airdrie man’s prized possessions. 

Todd Cunningham is a local picker and antique enthusiast who was renting out the triple car garage on the Osborne farm to house his Alberta antiques and artifacts.todd cunningham garage clean up june2018 credit todd cunninghamTodd Cunningham and other volunteers help clean up where a garage with his antiques used to be. (Photo Courtesy: Todd Cunningham)

Unfortunately, those items were lost following the fire that destroyed the garage on June 2nd.

“I lost a lot of Alberta history,” said Cunningham. “I’ve spent the last few years collecting and curating items from my acreages and farms all over this area and I was really happy to be able to store them on an Airdrie farm. I’ve lost a lot, we’ve lost a lot of that Alberta heritage.”

The support to help Cunningham and the Osborne family following the fire has helped make the recovery stage more bearable.

“The healing part of it in the last eight days has been the way that the community has responded to me, to the Osborne family. The authorities have been amazing, the Fire Department, the RCMP. While justice would give a little bit of consolation, I’m really just focusing on moving forward and continuing my passion.”

Cunningham’s next step is to find a new place to help rebuild his collection, and he’s already had tremendous support from other antique lovers.

“There’s kind of a subculture of the picking community that I’ve been immersed in for some time. People were giving me pieces, giving me artifacts that they have, the type of thing they know that I enjoy to get my collection going again.”

While Cunningham’s antiques were destroyed in the fire, he is finding a way to literally bring them out of the ashes.

“I’m looking at everything that’s burnt and charred that I have in my possession now and I’m going to make some incredible pieces, some incredible art that now has two stories.”

 

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Airdrie Family Loses A Part Of Their History In A Fire

 

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