Boston, MA Cocoanut Grove Club Fire, Nov 1942

Cocoanut Grove Night Club Fire from wikipedia.org Front View Of Building Side View of Building Memorial Plaque Memorial Plaque

10 FROM GREATER LOWELL LOSE LIVES IN HUB FIRE.

TWO CENTRALVILLE YOUNG WOMEN AMONG NIGHT CLUB VICTIMS.

FOUR WILMINGTON BROTHERS, ON PARTY WITH LOCAL WOMEN, ALSO PERISH -- ONE MISSING, ANOTHER INJURED FROM THIS AREA.

Lowell -- With scores of charred bodies remaining unidentified in Boston morgues, Greater Lowell had already counted 10 dead and one missing in the horrible holocaust enacted at the Cocoanut Grove club Saturday night, as the tragic list kept mounting early this afternoon.

Greater Lowell Victims.
Dead:
KELLY, MARY E., 21 Myrtle street, Lowell.
ROGERS, MILDRED, 50 Varnum street, Lowell.
FITZGERALD, Private HENRY T., 29, Lake street, Wilmington.
FITZGERALD, JAMES J., 39, Lake street, Wilmington.
FITZGERALD, JOHN A., 41, Lake street, Wilmington.
FITZGERALD, Wilfrid A., 31, Lake street, Wilmington.
LOWE, GEORGE T., 45, Frost road, Tyngsboro.
QUINLAN, Sergt, JOHN J., Burnap street, Wilmington.
ALTIERI, Private FRED L., Fort Devens.
ADLER, Private MILTON DAVID, Fort Devens.

Missing:
PEAVEY, JANE, daughter of Col. HARRY C. PEAVEY, Fort Devens.

Injured:
GOODWIN, JAMES, U. S. Coast Guard, Woburn street, North Wilmington, rescue worker.

Other Victims Well Known Here.
Dead:
AMBROSE, MARION, 42 Fine street, Winchester.
GRIFFIN, HELEN C., 330 Primrose street, Haverhill.
WELCH, HELEN, 28 Lebanon street, Winchester.
(All Lowell State Teachers' College graduates)
GILBRIDE, CAROLYN, 20, 44 Grant road, Swampscott.
Injured:
DEE, ANNA, 10 Bromfield street, West Somerville, also a Lowell State Teachers' College graduate.

The pall of grief arising from the unprecedented catastrophe, spread to the families of two Lowell young women, four Wilmington brothers, a Wilmington army sergeant and a Tyngsboro World War veteran. In addition, Lowell relatives and friends mourned the deaths of four young women living in other communities, but well know here as a result of attendance at the Lowell State Teachers' college. At least two Fort Devens soldiers also died.

Six of the local victims were members of a party of 12 men and women, only one of the whom was saved. There included MARY E. KELLY, 21 Myrtle street; MILDRED ROGERS, 50 Varnum street, and HARRY, JAMES, JOHN and WILFRID FITZGERALD of Lake street, Wilmington.
The town of Wilmington bore the brunt of Greater Lowell's losses, for in addition to the four FITZGERALD brothers, Sergt, JOHN J. QUINLAN of Burnap street, Wilmington, stationed at Fort Devens, also died in the club fire. MISS ROGERS was principal of a Wilmington grade school.
Late reports placed among the missing and probably dead, the name of MISS JANE PEAVEY, daughter of Col. and MRS. HARRY C. PEAVEY of Fort Devens. MISS PEAVEY'S father, dental chief at the fort, was leading a search for his this noon, with but scant hope of finding her alive.
Two Fort Devens soldiers were definitely placed among the dead. Officials gave their names as Private First Class FRED L. ALITERI and Private MILTON DAVID ADLER, the former a resident of Somerville. ADLER'S home city was not known at press time.
Several other Fort Devens officers and soldiers may also have lost their lives, and a thorough check was being made today.

Well-known here and all dead, are: The MISSES MARION AMBROSE, 42 Fine street, Winchester; HELEN WELCH, 28 Lebanon street, Winchester; CAROLYN GILBRIDE, 44 Grant road, Swampscott and HELEN C. GRIFFIN, 330 Primrose street, Haverhill. They were graduates of the local Teachers' college. Several have local relatives. Injured, is MISS ANNA DEE of 10 Bromfield street, West Somerville, also widely known and a former Teachers' college student.
The World War veteran who survived German bullets and shells, only to succumb in the Boston fire, was GEORGE T. LOWE, 45, of Frost road, Tyngsboro recently moved to Boston, where he was working at the navy yard.
LOWE'S sister, MRS. JULIA THOMPSON or read 238 Appleton street, heard her own name called out in reports yesterday as being among the dead. The case of mistaken identity caused many calls to come to her home and was apparently the result of her name being found on her brother's body.
The most tragic episode in the greater-Lowell area, was the near wiping-out of a party of 12 persons who had gathered at the club to fete the home-coming for the Thanksgiving holiday of two soldiers, Pvt. HENRY FITZGERALD of Wilmington and Pvt. ROBERT HORRIGAN of Turners Falls.
This group, comprising of six men and six young women, went to the club only a short time before fire broke out. All perished, with the exception of Pvt. HORRIGAN, who lies gravely injured in a Boston hospital.
Throughout the city and its suburbs, grief was widespread. For the first time since Pearl Harbor war was only a secondary topic. The city actually appeared stunned, although the tragedy occurred more than 25 miles away.
Lowell contributed the use of its patrol wagon, converted into an ambulance and several rescue workers while Wilmington supplied its own ambulance and a number of workers, one of whom was injured. He was JAMES GOODWIN, a member of the U. S. coast guard, who was hurt while aiding in removing victims. GOODWIN is belived to be the only Greater Lowell person injured.

Continued

Comments

Ruth Knox

My dad was Edward Knox, Ruth's brother. My older sister is named after Ruth. How are you related? Dianne Knox

My Grandfather is a survivor

My Grandfather is a survivor of the coconut grove and is still alive today. he helped save many people, a documentary was even mad on him because of his courage.

1942 Cocoanut Grove Fire- relative last name was Sullivan

Hi Louise Sullivan O'Brien,

Sorry to hear about your aunt. My grandfather's first cousin also perished in the Cocoanut Grove Fire. My father was 15 at the time. He does not remember her first name but her last name was Sullivan and her family lived in Quincy.

After doing research on the fire to determine my grandfather's cousin's first name, I found your 2 posts. My father's name is John Henson and so was his father and grandfather. (My grandfather and father lived in New York City).

Was your grandmother's maiden name Henson? It may be possible that you are my father's second cousin. Please email me to let me know. I tried to reply to your posts but not sure if you received my comments. My email is mjmb94@aol.com.

Thank you,

Jean Marie

1942 Cocoanut Grove Fire

Hi Louise,

Sorry to hear about your aunt. My grandfather's first cousin also perished in the Cocoanut Grove Fire. My father was 15 at the time. He does not remember her first name but her last name was Sullivan and her family lived in Quincy.

After doing research on the fire to determine my grandfather's cousin's first name, I found your 2 posts. My father's name is John Henson and so was his father and grandfather. (My grandfather and father lived in New York City).

Was your grandmother's maiden name Henson? It may be possible that you are my father's second cousin. Please email me to let me know. I have old photos taken in Quincy. My email is mjmb94@aol.com.

Thank you,

Jean Marie

1942 Cocoanut Grove Fire

Hi Louise,

My grandfather's 1st cousin perished in the Cocoanut Grove Fire. My father doesn't remember her first name but her last name was Sullivan. He remembers having an Aunt Jennie Sullivan that lived in Quincy.
After doing some research on the fire, I found your 2 posts. My father's name is John Henson and so was his father and grandfather. They all lived in New York City. Was your grandmother's maiden name Henson? It may be possible that you are my father's 2nd cousin. Please email me to let me know. I have a few old photos taken in Quincy. My email is mjmb94@aol.com.

Thank you,

Jean Marie

1942 Cocoanut Grove Fire

I was a child of five, when this happened. My Aunt Louise Sullivan whom
I was named after. She was identified, as I was told, by her engagement ring.
She and Larry had gone into Boston to celebrate their engagement.
They had intended to go to another establishment, but it was full.
Instead they went to the Coconut Grove.
Her Family lived in Quincy. Her mother's name was Jane Sullivan. All her brothers Chris, Joe, Hubert, and Dan worked at the Fore River Shipyard. My father being Chris.
I have followed articles to learn more. But, have never seen her name listed.
But have held her spirit in my heart, and prayers.
Louise J. Sullivan O'Brien

Katie, Do you happen to know

Katie,
Do you happen to know the name of John C. Cobb's roommate at the time of the fire? I'm guessing your mother probably knew but don't know if she shared that information. I'm trying to do some research, my great-uncle William Roland was the other man with John Cobb's party. He's from Gladstone, MI and I'm from Green Bay, WI, which I thought was a bit of a coincidence. Any information you could give me would be greatly appreciated. Thank you! Erin

Gilbert Williams Winslow Who got killed at Cocoanut Grove

I am looking for info. on where Gilbert Williams Winslow and Betty Winslow who got killed at the Cocoanut Grove Fire are buried?

Dotty Metzger aka Dotty Myles

My mother is Barbara Metzger, she was married to Dotty's cousin Alvin Metzger (my stepfather). I have an old magazine that features a first hand interview with Dotty after the fire. I would be happy to copy and send via email if you like. Incredible story...

Paul, you would be my

Paul, you would be my cousin. I was named after my Aunt Louise. I do not believe that my Grandmother and Grandfather were at the Cocoanut Grove that evening. My father Matthias, was the one who had to work and decline the invitation to go out that evening. It is true that my Grandmother then my Grandfather passed away within months of Louise's passing. We used to have a picture of our Aunt Louise hanging in our living room, I do believe that that picture is now in the possession of another of our cousins. I lost contact with most of my familly after my own father's death in 1975. I sure did adore my dad. So glad that he had to work that evening.