Fire Destroys Children's Memorial at Historic Des Moines Building

The front porch of the vacant, former North Des Moines City Council building that housed the Des Moines Black Liberation Movement's children's memorial burning early Wednesday morning. Photo: WHO-13

DES MOINES, Iowa -- An investigation is underway to determine if a fire at a vacant, historic Des Moines building is arson.

A fire early Wednesday morning destroyed the front porch of the former North Des Moines City Council building at 1601 6th Avenue, that's been vacant for some time.

The porch was being used as a Black children's memorial, honoring the lives of people like Breasia Terrell, a young girl who's body was found in a rural area in the Quad Cities after she was missing for more than nine months.

The Des Moines Black Liberation Movement took to Instagram and Twitter to share their disappointment over the destruction of the memorial.

The building is included in the city's multimillion dollar 6th Avenue rehabilitation project.

Des Moines police and fire are investigating.

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