- See more at: http://blogtimenow.com/blogging/automatically-redirect-blogger-blog-another-blog-website/#sthash.Q6qPkwFC.dpuf Happy Land Fire Remembered | Bronx News Networkbronx

Monday, March 29, 2010

Happy Land Fire Remembered

Visitors paid their respects at the Happy Land monument on Thursday

Thursday marked the 20th anniversary of the Happy Land Social Club fire, a blaze that killed 87 people in a nightclub on Southern Boulevard in East Tremont on March 25th, 1990. (More details on the fire here).

At dusk on Thursday evening, a crowd had gathered around the Happy Land monument just across the street from the former club. Family members placed flowers and lit candles next to photos of loved ones.

The iron fence around the monument, usually locked, was left open all day. Vases filled with flowers were hung from its posts, each adorned with a victim’s name.

At 7 p.m., Community Board 6 and the Happy Land 87 Committee held a memorial mass at nearby St. Thomas Aquinas Church. The service began with a reading of the victims’ names, and ended with a procession to the site of the club.

“I remember so well when this tragedy occurred, and I couldn’t imagine the pain and suffering it caused,” said Deputy Bronx Borough President Aurelia Greene, who attended the mass.

In a statement, Community Board 6 manager Ivine Galarza called on city agencies to continue to inspect neighborhood bars and clubs in order to prevent fires like the one at Happy Land, which had received a number of violations and was deemed a fire trap in the months before the tragedy.


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