The Charleston Fire Department will remember the nine firefighters who died 12 years ago in a massive furniture store fire in West Ashley.
The department will hold the ceremony at the Charleston 9 Memorial Park, which was built on the site of the former store, 7 p.m. Tuesday.
Starting at midnight Tuesday morning, firefighters began a 24-hour watch at the park’s flagpole. That park contains markers for each of the nine firefighters killed that evening.
Crews responded at 7:09 p.m. to a fire reported at the back of the Sofa Super Store on Savannah Highway on the evening of June 18, 2007. Within forty minutes, the store would be engulfed in flames, nine firefighters would be lost, and our community would be changed forever.
By 7:23 p.m., smoke and fire could be seen above the West showroom where three of the firefighters were later found.
Just after 7:30 p.m., a mayday call goes out over the radio, followed by a message believed to be for one of the men’s wives: “I love you.”