Thursday, July 30, 2015

Petition seeks memorial at building collapse site

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A woman kneels by a memorial for collapse victim Kim J. Finnegan outside the Salvation Army thrift store, set up after the June 5 incident. A petition is seeking a permanent memorial park at the site of the collapse.
A woman kneels by a memorial for collapse victim Kim J. Finnegan outside the Salvation Army thrift store, set up after the June 5 incident. A petition is seeking a permanent memorial park at the site of the collapse.

A petition on Change.org is seeking to set up a memorial and park for the victims of the deadly building collapse in Center City.

The petition asks city officials and the Salvation Army to fund a memorial at the site of the June 5 collapse at 22nd and Market streets. Six people were killed and 13 injured when a building being demolished toppled onto the adjacent thrift store.

"The memorial park would be a fitting way to acknowledge the disaster, to assure that it will never be forgotten and to remind the citizens of Philadelphia of the need for government oversight in building demolitions in order to protect public safety and human lives," says the petition, which was launched by Philadelphia city Treasurer Nancy Winkler. Winkler's 24-year-old daughter, Anne Bryan, died in the incident.

The petition continues: "A well designed park and memorial may provide healing for the many people touched by this horrific, entirely avoidable event."

As of this morning, the petition had garnered more than 1,300 signatures.

The disaster has spurred criminal charges against an excavator operator, grand jury and City Council investigations, and civil lawsuits. The first wrongful death suit over the collapse -- brought by the family of Mary Lea Simpson, who was shopping with Bryan at the time of the incident -- was filed earlier this week.


Contact Emily Babay at 215-854-2153 or ebabay@philly.com. Follow @emilybabay on Twitter.

Contact the Breaking News Desk at 215-854-2443; BreakingNewsDesk@philly.com. Follow @phillynews on Twitter.

PHILLY.COM
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