Home / National News / Victims of East Harlem Building Collapse Remembered at Services


(NEW YORK) — Services took place Sunday in East Harlem, N.Y., to remember the victims of last week’s building collapse that investigators believe was caused by a natural-gas explosion.

The Rev. Joyce Eady talked about the void felt by congregants of the Bethel Gospel Assembly that lost two members to the building collapse, Griselde Camacho, 45, and Carmen Tanco, 67.

Eight people were killed by the explosion and collapse that also injured more than 60 others while over 100 people were left homeless. There is also the possibility that other bodies might be found.

Meanwhile, New York Mayor Bill de Blasio and City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito attended a service held by the Spanish Christian Church but not at the usual location since the church was completely destroyed in the explosion.

Much was made during the service about a Bible that was found intact Saturday among the rubble that was once the church. When the Rev. Thomas Perez was told of the find, the 83-year-old pastor was so overwhelmed with emotion that he suffered chest pains. Perez is said to be doing okay now.

Also on Sunday, National Transportation Safety Board investigators began to test gas pipelines at the site of the collapsed buildings to determine the cause of the explosion. There is speculation that a faulty or broken gas main beneath Park Avenue might have triggered the blast.

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