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165 killed in supper club fire remembered on 45th anniversary of Tri-State tragedy

Hundreds more were hurt in 1977 fire
Posted at 12:06 AM, May 29, 2022
and last updated 2022-05-29 00:26:10-04

SOUTHGATE, Ky. — May 28, 1977 is a date that may never be forgotten in the Tri-State. 165 people were killed and hundreds more were hurt in a fire at the Beverly Hills Supper Club in Southgate, Kentucky on that date.

The famed club near Cincinnati, which was known for entertainment, was hosting a huge crowd that night. People showed up to see popular Hollywood actor and entertainer John Davidson, who was headlining the evening.

Before the main act ever hit the stage, a fire broke out in the building. Many made it out, but so many were killed in the tragic fire that a makeshift morgue had to be set up nearby.

The blaze dominated the headlines of the day. Forty-five years later, victims of the tragedy were remembered at the site by those who can not forget.

Saturday was the 45th anniversary of the fire that destroyed the club, which is remembered as part Vegas and part Hollywood. The cause was never confirmed, but some say it was faulty wiring while others believe it was more nefarious.

The lack of a sprinkler system and alarms, along with locked doors and overcrowding, contributed to the massive loss of life. The crowd was well over capacity for the facility.

Survivors and families gathered Saturday to share stories, photos, memories and artifacts. One woman brought a napkin she clutched while escaping the fire. She has held onto it all of these years.

The Supper Club site is active again in 2022, as a plan is in the works to develop the area into a housing development. Ashley Builders Group, the company behind "Memorial Pointe" released a statement on Saturday.

"Our thoughts and prayers are with the victims of the fire and their loved ones and we again express gratitude to the first responders who fought the fire and cared for the injured," the statement said in part. "Planning continues on a fitting memorial for the site, which is being prepared for construction on a development the entire community will be proud of."

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