31 December, 2017
At least 12 people died in the fire.
Thierno Diallo, 59, a security guard originally from Conakry, Guinea, who lives in a ground floor apartment said he was asleep when he heard banging on the door. Firefighters, already on the scene, helped her into a ladder to safety. "I lost my angel baby and my bestfriend; my mother".
She expressed regret at the tragedy and said the Foreign Ministry was working with the Jamaican Consulate in NY to get details on the deaths. Excluding the September 11 attacks, it was the worst fire in the city since 87 people were killed at a social club fire in the Bronx in 1990.
According to Daniel A Nigro, the city fire commissioner, who was quoted by the New York Times, the boy who turned on the gas stove inadvertently had a history of being fascinated with gas burners. Another 10 people were killed at a Bronx fire in 2007, nine of them children.
The management company for the building's owner, D&E Equities, said it was talking to city officials and was "shocked and saddened" by the deaths and injuries.
The building's owner, Howard Alkoff, could not be reached for comment. From there, the fire spread throughout the five-story building, authorities said.
"Children starting fires is not rare", Nigro added.
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"Close the door, close the door, close the door", Commissioner Nigro said urged residents in the event that another fire like this happens.
Late Friday, NYPD revealed the identities of several others killed in fire: Shantay Young, 19; Karen Francis, 37; Kylie Francis, 2; and Charmela Francis, 7.
Numerous 25 families who lived in the Bronx apartment building were immigrants, "hard-working people going about their lives", said Jonathan Morris, the priest at the nearby Our Lady of Mount Carmel Catholic Church, who said he spent Thursday night with the families at St. Barnabas Hospital as they were called upon to identify the dead.
The city housing department said investigators would look into why the door did not close automatically, though Mayor Bill de Blasio said there was "nothing problematic about the building that contributed to this tragedy". "It was horrific, heartbreaking", said Michael de Vulpillieres, a Red Cross spokesman.
The cause remained under investigation.
Alexander Hamilton said, "There is a certain enthusiasm in liberty, that makes human nature rise above itself, in acts of bravery and heroism". He kept going back into that burning building willingly, not thinking of the consequences as much as he knew it was his job to try and save lives. Before coming to Washington in 2015, she spent seven years covering war, politics and religion in the Middle East, and served as the Post's Cairo bureau chief.