Station Club Site Owner Promises $2M And A Memorial To GREAT WHITE Tragedy

January 1, 2008 reports that the owner of a Rhode Island property that was the site of the nation's deadliest nightclub blaze will pay more than $2 million to the victims but a Ground Zero-like dispute is simmering over a memorial proposed for the vacant lot.

In addition to the multimillion dollar payout, Ray Villanova, owner of the land where the Station nightclub burned and left 100 dead February 20, 2003 at a GREAT WHITE concert, wants to donate the parcel for a memorial, according to a source close to the settlement talks.

Villanova's attorney Jim Murphy of Providence confirmed a settlement has been reached but declined to discuss details. Asked whether his client will turn over the property, Murphy said: "Mr. Villanova has always expressed an interest and a desire to donate the land for a memorial."

The Station Memorial Fund has been raising money and soliciting designs but nothing has been finalized as there is widespread disagreement over what to build. A similar dispute has slowed construction of a memorial to the Sept. 11 victims at Ground Zero in New York.


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