RICHMOND HEIGHTS, MO – A doctor’s office that’s been a part of the St. Louis community for decades goes up in flames. The sports medicine facility treated well-known athletes and stage performers. Dr. Bill Droege owned Esquire Orthopedic Rehabilitation and Sports Medicine. He said it was the first sports medicine facility in the St. Louis area.
The fire broke out around 4 a.m. Monday morning. Flames were shooting into the air. It appears the building was a total loss.
The doctor was relying on his faith to get him through these tough times. “God has his ways. There has to be some reason for this, maybe to give me a rest after 40 years, very trying and a very difficult time in my life,” said Dr. Droege.
He said the office was very busy, 140 patients were to be seen Monday by himself and other doctors. Plus, there are two more locations, one in Illinois, the other in South County. Dr. Droege added, “We’re hopefully meeting tomorrow with medical facilities around here to find some space for us to get into until this all can be resolved.”
He and his wife, Janet, inspected the boarded-up building late Monday afternoon. Over the years Dr. Droege treated professional athletes, some of them superstars, and he cared for performers from The Muny. Those patients gave him gifts. He kept them on display in his office. Now those items have turned to ashes. People who saw the collection were in awe. Crista Johnson is a friend of the family, she saw the collection of gifts. “Very impressive really amazing stuff so it’s stuff that never been replaced.” Droege added, “Those things I cannot get back, and a lot of them (patients) have passed since I treated them,” said Johnson.
Even though the fire was devastating. The doctor and his wife are already looking to the future. “He’s going to come back stronger than ever though, I really believe that,” said Janet Droege.
They said the fire started on the roof.
If you’re a patient call the office number 314-644-0885, and someone will answer during business hours who can help you reschedule.