A memorial service will be held for the victims of Schenectady’s fatal Jay Street fire on Sunday, marking the one-year anniversary of the tragedy.
Michael Roberson, the brother of Robert Thomas, who died in the fire, organized the service for victims of the massive blaze.
The service will be held from 2 to 5:30 p.m. Sunday in front of Schenectady City Hall, across from the fire site.
What: Jay Street fire memorial service
When: Sunday, March 6
Time: 2–5:30 p.m.
Where: In front of Schenectady City Hall on Jay Street
Why: To honor the fire victims and people affected by the fire
The March 6, 2015, fire at 100-104 Jay St. claimed the lives of Thomas, 31, as well as Harry Simpson, 59; Berenices Suarez, 33; and Jermaine Allen, 37.
Roberson is calling the event “The Rising” and said it’s an effort to bring the community together to honor the lives of the deceased and other victims of the fire.
The fire was ruled accidental, starting in Simpson’s apartment on the fourth floor of 104 Jay St. The fire quickly spread to neighboring 100-102 Jay St.
Four people died, seven were hospitalized and 60 or more displaced.
The two apartment buildings have since been demolished. The properties are now vacant lots.
Records in connection with the fire have been sealed since they were subpoenaed by the Schenectady County District Attorney’s Office as part of a grand jury investigation.
The investigation is still ongoing.
The city inspected all 20 units of 104 Jay St. the day before the fire. Former tenants claim that fire alarms and sprinkler systems were not working in the building at the time of the fire.
The owner and manager of 104 Jay St. face several lawsuits from families of the deceased and victims of the fire.
There are also more than a dozen notices of claims, precursors to lawsuits, against the city of Schenectady.