Local church collects donations for Station fire memorial

(Photo: WPRI/ Brian Yocono)

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) — Faith communities in Rhode Island came together this weekend to complete the fundraising efforts to build a memorial for the 100 people who died in the Station Nightclub Fire.

Eyewitness News Reporter Brian Yocono spent Sunday morning at St. Kevin Church in Warwick, where a second collection during Mass was donated to the Station Fire Memorial Foundation.

Fr. Robert Marciano said the final phase of fundraising needs to be completed so the site of the fire in West Warwick can become a place of healing.

“It’s something that touched every Rhode Island life. Took lives, changed lives and impacted everyone,” Marciano said. “It’s often said that no one in Rhode Island was unaffected by this tragedy.”

Fr. Marciano is a chaplain for first responders in Warwick. He also responded to the club the night of the fire.

“My sharpest memory from that night and the days to follow are the mothers whom we would meet and console,” he said. “Those who lost sons and daughters, whose pain was and is so deep that words just come short to comfort them.”

The donations from the second collection at each of the weekend Masses at St. Kevin – and at events at 500 congregations across the area – will go towards helping the foundation reach its $2 million goal.

“To see the people respond to this and to get the ‘yes’ that they want to help these families that they may never meet, is an impressive thing about our faith,” Fr. Marciano said. “Our faith is to affect lives that we don’t see.”

According to Fr. Marciano, the weekend’s donations look to be about $3,000.

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