Two years ago this week (March 13, 2006) two Pittsburgh firefighters were tragically killed in a collapse while operating in the final stages of a church fire. Battalion Chief Charles Brace, 55, acting as an Incident Safety Officer, and Master Firefighter Richard Stefanakis, 51, were performing overhaul, extinguishing remaining hot spots about three hours after the initial alarm.
The two were inside the church vestibule when the bell tower collapsed, killing them and injuring over 20 other firefighters. A backdraft had occurred earlier in the incident injuring an additional six firefighters. The call came in at 0845, the backdraft occurred at 0928 and the collapse occurred at 1214 hours. Below is a link to the entire NIOSH report.
Remembering takes on two different meanings.
The first is of course, to remember the loss and the suffering that the members of Pittsburgh Fire have gone through. Even more importantly is to remember the Brace and Stefanakis