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Painful Memories For RI Station Nightclub Fire Survivors After Club Fire In Brazil

By Michael Rosenfield, WBZ-TV
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WBZ-TV's Michael Rosenfield Michael Rosenfield
Michael Rosenfield is the New Hampshire Bureau Chief for CBS Boston’s...
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WARWICK, R.I. (CBS) – She was just 28 years old. A special ed teacher. And at just under five feet tall, Abbie Hoisington still commanded the respect of her students and colleagues.

WBZ NewsRadio 1030’s Kim Tunnicliffe reports 

“There’s nothing I can do to bring her back,” says Abbie’s mother Bonnie. “And that’s difficult.”

Abbie Hoisington was one of the 100 victims killed at the Station, the nightclub in West Warwick that went up in flames almost ten years ago.

Her parents say they know what the families of the victims in Brazil are now going through, and it is a painful road ahead.

“Time does not heal all wounds,” said Bonnie. “I don’t see how you can have closure to it.”

As the tenth anniversary of the Rhode Island fire approaches, Paula McLaughlin is working on a new exhibit featuring photographs of some 80 tattoos which have been inked by family and friends in honor of their loved ones. Paula lost her brother Michael Hoogasian and his wife Sandy.

“This is how we carry them with us every day and how we remember, “said McLaughlin about the tattoos. “Some of the pictures are incredibly powerful.”

The exhibit runs February 15 to 17 at the Pawtucket Armory in Rhode Island. Admission is free, but any donations will go toward a permanent memorial at the site of the fire.

Bonnie and Leland Hoisington, Abbie’s parents, who will be at the exhibit, are frustrated that a similar fire has happened again.

“It’s sinful that all those people lost their lives,” said Bonnie. “Nothing was learned.”

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