Site Meter Elsie's Space: It's been a difficult day...
Location: New England, United States

Not much to tell.

Friday, September 29, 2006

It's been a difficult day...

watching families mourn their loved ones so openly and so publicly. They all had a story to tell of how their lives have changed since The Fire. It's a small community here, the club just miles from my home, and everyone has been affected one way or another.

Then my old, wonderful friend Jody took the stand. We knew each other well way back when, both of us graduates of the class of '79. He looked right into the face of another classmate, Mike, one of the brothers who owned the club. Jody was the first to say the fire was an accident. I'm so proud of him. It is the first time I've seen Mike cry in public. In a strange way, I'm proud of him, too. Jody is hurting having lost his little brother. Mike is hurting, being held responsible for the death of 100. I'm hurting, watching them both.

I know it won't end here for either of them or the families of the other 99. Jody lives without his brother. Mike has lost everything and will spend four years in jail. I will go on praying for peace for them both. It's a senseless tragedy. We will not forget.


Blogger Elsie said...

For anyone interested in reading more about this, It's interesting to note that neither national or local tv has shown my friend, Jody. I think it's because he remained calm and was forgiving. Jody noted that it was like the perfect storm, a series of events that all came together to cause this horrific event. I caution you about video you might consider watching. It's more than disturbing. The screams of pain and terror I still hear every day.

10:14 AM  
Blogger Elsie said...

Also interesting to note about Jody's statement, Tracey was Jody's younger brother, but physically much bigger, which is what Jody referred to. It would be nice if the paper would get their facts straight. And why didn't they print that Jody said it was a horrible accident. It turned out he was the only one to say so. There was an older man who lost his son who did ask that the court remove his son's name from the criminal complaint so that the charge of involuntary manslaughter would be reduced to 99.

10:22 AM  
Blogger Peter (the other) said...

I remember now, a terrible night.

In Boston, where I grew up, there had been a nightclub fire in the forties or fifties, where many died also. Between the latent childhood memory of that (and my mothers fears), and the night club fires that seem to happen at least once every year or two, somewhere in the world, has made me pay attention to EXIT signs. Many Parisian Hotels, having only one central way up and down, make me positively think of alternate exit strategys on my first night (adjacent rooftops?, knoted blankets? etc.). An important lesson learned, notice and mark in your mind, alternative exits.

May your friends, and community, heal with time.

12:01 PM  
Blogger Elsie said...

Peter, my capitalist background is in construction products (where I met our friend). Having learned about fire from the leading fire experts in the U.S., my fear is real and sobering. Not long before The Fire we were at a nightclub with friends (Bob Weir in town, how could I resist). People shoulder to shoulder, something I'm not comfortable with. I insisted upon sitting near an exit. Then someone's coat caught fire. Fortunately, a bouncer threw it into the alley -- crisis averted. A friend (who used to work at the same company) made fun of my paranoia. The day after the fire, he called and said he'd never do that again. Laws have been changed here, and I hope to never see anything like it again.

2:07 PM  

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