WEST WARWICK, R.I. (WPRI) – Like so many who were on the scene following the Station nightclub fire ten years ago, Lt. General Reginald Centracchio says the night is one he'll never forget.
Centracchio was the Adjutant General of the National Guard and the director of the state's Emergency Management Agency at the time. He was also a first responder. In an interview with WPRI, he recalled the "heroism" that was on display on the tragic night.
"That particular night will never ever leave my mind," Centracchio said. "When you look at the kind of heroes that responded, first responders, it was just unbelievable to see the kind of cooperation, the kind of heroism in my mind."
One hundred people were killed when the band manager for Great White set off a pyrotechnic that ignited flammable foam in the West Warwick club. A memorial now stands in the club's place.
Centracchio said the EMA was extremely helpful with establishing communication between various agencies and said in the weeks that followed, they also helped create family support center at the Crowne Plaza in Warwick.
"All you could do was listen and certainly give them as much comfort as you could," he said. "But looking in their faces and their eyes you can't begin to even appreciate all the kind of despair that was in their eyes."