Man killed in Beaver Dam explosion identified, funeral set for T - WKOW 27: Madison, WI Breaking News, Weather and Sports

Man killed in Beaver Dam explosion identified, funeral set for Thursday

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Courtesy: Ryan & Joyce-Ryan Funeral Homes and Cremation Services Courtesy: Ryan & Joyce-Ryan Funeral Homes and Cremation Services

BEAVER DAM (WKOW) -- The pastor who will preside at the funeral for the man killed in an explosion at a Beaver Dam apartment said his death is puzzling to people who knew him. 

Beaver Dam Police Chief John Kreuziger Wednesday identified the bomb-making suspect as 28-year old Benjamin Morrow.

The Wisconsin State Journal reports, Rev. Jerry Marsden said Morrow had friends and family who loved him, and he was not a bomb maker.  

Morrow's funeral is scheduled for Thursday, March 15.  

But Kreuziger says he stands behind law enforcement's position that Morrow amassed dangerous chemicals and other materials to build bombs.  He declines to comment on Morrow's motive.

Morrow was a quality control technician for Richelieu Foods in Beaver Dam and previously worked as an associate scientist at PPD of Middleton.  

"He was quiet, kept to himself, didn't cause any problems, didn't go any way for people to cause problems for him,"  Richelieu Foods worker Stephanie Polchinski tells 27 News.  "He was nice.  He was kind and polite to everybody," Polchinski says, noting she saw Morrow almost every evening during her work shift.  Polchinski says she was unaware of any friction between Morrow and any other Richelieu Foods staff member, or any issue Morrow had with his employer.

A representative of Richelieu Foods has yet to respond to a request from comment from 27 News.

A controlled burn of the Beaver Dam apartment building, where the explosion happened, is scheduled for Thursday.

Two controlled detonations at the apartment building on Knaup Drive took place last week to neutralize dangerous chemicals after authorities said it was too dangerous to remove chemicals from the building.  Authorities say the planned burn will consume remaining chemical agents.

"I've had a few calls to my office about the forethought, the necessity to burn these buildings,"  Beaver Dam Fire Chief Alan Mannel says.  "We carefully reviewed this and firmly believe this is the action that needs to be taken unfortunately,"  Mannel says.

Neighboring streets will be closed and a perimeter will be established around the burn area.  Mannel says sensors supplied by the Environmental Protection Agency will monitor air quality and other fire factors.

The planned burn was postponed because of a forecast of high winds Wednesday, but Mannel says Thursday conditions should be ideal for the burn.

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