Charleston 9 ceremony held on 10th anniversary of deadly fire
WEST ASHLEY, SC (WCSC) - The Charleston 9 firefighter remembrance ceremony was held Sunday night.
Ten years ago, people across the Lowcountry and around the world made a promise to never forget the Charleston 9.
They were the nine Charleston firefighters who died while battling the Sofa Super Store fire on the evening of June 18, 2007.
The site of the deadly fire on Savannah Highway in West Ashley is now the Charleston 9 Memorial Park. It is a place where each of the nine firefighters is honored with markers placed in the spot where their bodies were found.
Battalion Chief and Director of Training Robert Baldwin says he responded to the fire, he was an engineer at the time.
""The best way to describe it looked like a war scene," Baldwin said.
Tens years later, the memory never fades.
"It's really more about living every day with it over time, time heals all wounds but you never forget," Baldwin said.
At the time the fire was the greatest single loss of firefighters since the 9/11 terrorist attacks.
Interim Charleston Fire Chief John Tippett says today is about acknowledging the sacrifices of the families.
"It's the time that we change the focus from everything else we're doing and point all of our attention to them," Tippett said.
At the ceremony a chaplain who responded that night. Rev. Jimmy Gallant read a special tribute to each of the nine written by their families.
"I have nine little dots on my heart and they will go with me to my grave because I will carry it with me," Gallant said.
The city is looking to add to the memorial. There are also plans in the works to build a fire station on the lot next to the memorial.
You can watch Sunday's ceremony below:
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