Memorial to Noyes St. fire victims comes down | News
PORTLAND, Maine (NEWS CENTER) -- The memorial to the six victims of the Noyes Street fire of 2014 was taken down Saturday afternoon after the lease of the space with the city expired, according to the artist.
The 'Stars of Light' memorial hung in Longfellow Park for 90 days as a dedication to the six people who died in one of Maine's deadliest fires in decades.
Friday night, family members of those who died gathered in the park and lit candles to remember their loved ones.
"I've lost a father in my life, I've lost a sister in my life, but losing a daughter is just something that will never, ever be replaced," said Louis Thomas, father of Ashley Thomas, who was killed in blaze.
"Anybody that's ever met her will tell you she would light up the room when she would walk into it," said Ashley's mother, Nikki. "I thank the city of Portland for letting us put them here for our families because it's hard."
Pandora LaCasse, the artist behind the memorial, said the city came to her to create the memorial and have it prepared for the one year anniversary of the fire, Novermber 1, 2015. She said the tree and the lights were both symbols of the people who died, and that even though the memorial was taken down, the celebration of their life will continue.
"It doesn't erase what this stood for, or the memory, so I feel that maybe there's the next step of something else," said LaCasse.
LaCasse said she plans to reach out to the family members to offer them private, personal memorials made from the lights of the original display. On Friday, many of the family members discussed the idea of something more permanent as a memorial to their children, such as a bench.
"They're as beautiful as our children were. Their light is like the light that these kids had in their hearts and the love they had in their hearts and the fun and just life in general. They enjoyed life, and that's what they represent to me," said Nikki Thomas. "I just really wish they would just leave them up."