Thursday, February 19, 2009
Ringing of church bells
Ringing of church bells tonight will pay respects to victims of plane crash
By Gene Warner
Town of Clarence officials are asking churches throughout Western New York to peal their church bells at least 50 times at 10:20 p.m. tonight — exactly one week after the crash of Flight 3407.
"Hopefully, the symbolism of the bells ringing will help bring some healing to the community," Supervisor Scott A. Bylewski said after this morning's media briefing in the Clarence Library.
Bylewski noted that 50 people died in the crash last Thursday night and that one of the victims was about seven months pregnant.
"So we're asking the churches to ring their bells at least 50 times," the supervisor said.
Officials opened today's media briefing with 50 seconds of silence, once again to honor the memory of those killed a week ago.
Bylewski met with surviving members of Douglas C. Wielinski's family. Wielinski was killed when the Continental Connection plane crashed into his home.
The supervisor said much of what was said in the meeting will remain private, but the family did want him to pass on its thanks for the community's thoughts and support since the crash.
"They also wanted the public to know that they do not want a home or house to be rebuilt on their property," Bylewski said.
He added that it's too soon to determine what kind of memorial, if any, will be erected at that site.
Also at this morning's briefing, Clarence emergency services coordinator David Bissonette reiterated the timetable for the roughly dozen families that have been displaced by the crash to return home.
"It is still our goal to accommodate residents to be back in their homes this weekend," Bissonette said.
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