On December 2, 1999, Six firefighters of the Worcester, MA Fire department lost their lives while fighting a large fire inside a vacant warehouse in Worcester, Mass. Over 40 firefighters attempted to put out the blaze. Many of them entered the building looking for two homeless people believed to be inside.
The six who died became lost in the heavy black smoke caused by the petroleum lining of the cold storage lockers.
Worcester Fire Department District Chief Mike McNamee had to make a very difficult decision. He had no choice but to order everyone out of the building due to the rapidly declining conditions inside. Sadly, when the fire was out, the fire had claimed six of Worcester's bravest.