SAN GABRIEL ( — Residents Friday were saddened by the damage caused by a 3-alarm blaze in San Gabriel.

The fire erupted just after 7 p.m. Thursday outside a T-Mobile store in the 200 block of South Gabriel Boulevard.

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The flames then spread to two neighboring businesses, including the Soyodo Chinese Book Store and Gift Shop.

Andrew Rodriguez was among the dozens who went to see the devastating damage firsthand.

“This place is pretty well known…just in the area. It’s pretty sad to see it like this,” he said.

Jimmie Joe said he has been to the bookstore for years to pick up his Chinese newspaper.

“We come here every Sunday about 1 p.m. after church and we buy our newspaper,” he said.

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Maryann Messima-Doerning grew up in the area and was surprised by what happened.

“This building on the end was scary because we had heard there was an explosion. We were worried about people being caught inside,” she said.

KCAL9’s Amy Johnson reported that everyone made it out of the building safely, but two firefighters suffered injuries. They were treated and released from the hospital.

It’s unclear if the building owners will rebuild.

The cause of the blaze is under investigation.


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