Follow Up: Retired Philadelphia firefighter recalls moments before One Meridian Plaza blaze

  • Source: WPVI-TV ABC 6 Philadelphia
  • Published: 02/23/2021 07:13 PM

February 23, 1991, is a day retired firefighter Jack Bloomer will never forget. "We were just sitting around having dinner and after we had dinner we were shooting pool when the alarm came in," he remembers. That alarm was in response to what developed into the worst high-rise fire in Philadelphia history. Engine 11 quickly arrived to find flames shooting from the 22nd floor of One Meridian Plaza near City Hall. Bloomer was put in charge of the engine that day, so firefighters Phyllis McAllister and James Chappell ran in with Captain David Holcombe leading the way. It was the last time Bloomer would see his colleagues and friends alive. "Sometimes it seems like it was yesterday, and other days, you know, It's constantly something you think about," Bloomer says on the 30 year anniversary of the fire.


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