12:13 PM EST

Stephen F. Lynch, D-MA 9th

Mr. LYNCH. Mr. Speaker, I move to suspend the rules and agree to the resolution (H. Res. 787) expressing the support and sympathy of the House of Representatives and the people of the United States for the victims of the tragic fire that occurred in Ocean Isle Beach, North Carolina, on October 28, 2007.

The Clerk read the title of the resolution.

The text of the resolution is as follows:

H. Res. 787

Whereas in the early morning of October 28, 2007, flames broke out at a beach house in Ocean Isle Beach, North Carolina;

Whereas the fire spread quickly and took the lives of seven college students, six attended the University of South Carolina and one went to Clemson University: Lauren Mahon of Simpsonville, South Carolina; Allison Walden of Chagrin Falls, Ohio; Travis Cale, Justin Anderson and Emily Yelton of Greenville, South Carolina; William Rhea of Florence, South Carolina, and Cassidy Pendley of Chapin, South Carolina;

Whereas 6 University of South Carolina students were injured while escaping the flames and were treated at Brunswick Community Hospital;

Whereas local community members rushed to alert and assist emergency personnel to support the students and their families in the aftermath of the tragedy;

Whereas firefighters, paramedics, police officers, and other emergency personnel from the surrounding communities responded quickly and worked bravely to rescue the injured and extinguish the fire;

Whereas the State of North Carolina and local government officials responded to the fire and its aftermath quickly, effectively, and compassionately;

Whereas the immediate outpouring of support, assistance and compassion from the Nation and South Carolinians is greatly appreciated; and

Whereas the students, faculty, staff, and officials at Clemson University and University of South Carolina have come together as a university community to remember the fallen students and provide strength and support to its respective campuses through this difficult time: Now, therefore, be it

Resolved, That the House of Representatives--

(1) expresses its deepest condolences to the families and friends of Lauren Mahon, Allison Walden, Travis Cale, Justin Anderson, Emily Yelton, William Rhea, and Cassidy Pendley; and offers its hope for the quick and full recovery of those students who were injured in the fire;

(2) expresses immense gratitude for the efforts of countless emergency response personnel, local, State, and Federal officials, health care providers, volunteers, and citizens who have been part of the response; and

(3) expresses its support for all of the students, faculty, administration, and staff at the University of South Carolina and Clemson University as they heal from this tragedy.

12:13 PM EST

Stephen F. Lynch, D-MA 9th

Mr. LYNCH. Mr. Speaker, as a member of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, I am pleased to join my colleagues in the consideration of H. Res. 787 which expresses the support and sympathy of the House of Representatives of the people of the United States for the victims of the tragic fire recently that occurred in Ocean Isle Beach, North Carolina. House Resolution 787, which has 66 cosponsors, was introduced by my friend and colleague Mr. JAMES CLYBURN.

Mr. Speaker, on Sunday, October 28, 2007, seven college students perished in a fire in Ocean Isle Beach, North Carolina. They were victims of an early morning fire that engulfed a two-story house. There were also six survivors who were hospitalized but later released.

Of the seven students who perished, six were from the University of South Carolina, and one was from Clemson University.

We in this Congress express our heartfelt sympathy for the victims, their families and the campus communities that have been affected.

[Time: 12:15]

These students were among our best and brightest. Their striving, their aspirations, and the hope and support of their families, especially their parents, for their future embodies a shining example of what is best about America.

The Ocean Isle Beach's fire claimed the precious lives of seven young people who had so much to live for and so much to give. We express our deepest sympathy to the victims and their families.

Mr. Speaker, I commend my colleague Representative JIM CLYBURN for seeking to express the deepest sympathy of the House of Representatives on this sad occasion, and I urge the swift passage of this bill.

Mr. Speaker, I reserve the balance of my time.

12:15 PM EST

Jim Jordan, R-OH 4th

Mr. JORDAN of Ohio. Mr. Speaker, I rise to mourn the passing of seven of this Nation's young students. On the morning of October 28, 2007, a fire quickly swept through the beach house in Ocean Isle Beach, North Carolina, where they were spending a weekend.

Six of the seven were students at the University of South Carolina. The seventh attended Clemson. All were filled with much promise.

With this in mind, I express my deepest condolences to the friends and families of the seven. Rest assured that you are in all of our thoughts and prayers.

I would also like to take this opportunity to commend the entire community of Ocean Isle Beach, North Carolina, for its response to this tragedy. From the very onset of the flames, local citizens rushed to alert and assist [Page: H12765]

emergency responders. These responders then worked bravely to rescue those trapped inside, aid the injured, and extinguish the fire.

Unfortunately, the blaze was too powerful and claimed seven young lives. However, without the adept response of all involved, the tragic toll of this blaze would have surely been higher. It is with all this in mind that I would like to take this opportunity to commend those involved in the response. Our sincere gratitude goes out to all of you.

Mr. Speaker, I reserve the balance of our time.

12:16 PM EST

James Clyburn, D-SC 6th

Mr. CLYBURN. I thank my colleague for yielding me the time.

Mr. Speaker, this resolution memorializes and commemorates the lives of seven students from the University of South Carolina and Clemson University who perished in last week's tragic beach house fire in Ocean Isle Beach, North Carolina.

I proudly represent the University of South Carolina, and I rise to thank the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform for its prompt action on this resolution and to once again extend my deepest condolences to the families, friends, and loved ones of those University of South Carolina and Clemson students who we lost in this unfortunate event. They should all know that we will continue to keep them and their loved ones in our prayers as they mourn their tremendous loss.

There's little that we cherish more than seeing our children and grandchildren go off to school seeking to acquire the knowledge and skills that they will need to pursue their dreams and aspirations. It is an incredible feeling. And to have that promise cut short in such a dramatic and tragic way is probably more than anyone who has not had the experience can possibly imagine.

As we mourn with the University of South Carolina and Clemson University communities at this solemn time, we should all take some solace in knowing that these young people represented the best of our hopes and dreams for the future. Through their extracurricular activities and academic successes, they served as strong role models for future generations and as sources of pride for their families and friends. It is only fitting that we honor them for being the bright beacons of light that they

were and that their loved ones will always remember them as being.

No words or sympathetic sentiments will ever undo the tragic loss endured by the University of South Carolina and Clemson communities. However, by passing this resolution, it is my hope that these communities understand that this congressional body stands in unison in offering our prayers and condolences.

May God bless all those affected by this tragedy.

12:19 PM EST

Gresham Barrett, R-SC 3rd

Mr. BARRETT of South Carolina. I thank the gentleman for yielding.

Mr. Speaker, on October 28, 2007, a tragic and accidental fire in Ocean Isle Beach, North Carolina, claimed seven very young lives. Six of the victims were students at the University of South Carolina: Cassidy Fae Pendley, Lauren Astrid Kristiana Mahon, Justin Michael Anderson, Travis Lane Cale, Allison Walden, William Rhea. One of the victims, Emily Lauren Yelton, was a sophomore at Clemson University, a graduate of J.L. Mann High School in Greenville, a member of the Delta Zeta sorority and

a member of Young Life of Greenville.

These brilliant young college students were sisters, brothers, devoted sons and daughters, athletes, instructors, friends, volunteers, coaches, and leaders. Family members and friends have recounted how each one has given support, made a difference and brightened people's lives.

I stand here today to support H. Res. 787, which is a resolution sponsored by Congressman Jim Clyburn to express much-needed support for those fire victims.

I would also like to recognize and offer sympathy to the victims' families and let them know that South Carolina and the people of this Nation, Mr. Speaker, will always honor those names that we loved and lost.

12:22 PM EST

Stephen F. Lynch, D-MA 9th

Mr. LYNCH. Mr. Speaker, I move to suspend the rules and agree to the resolution (H. Res. 787) expressing the support and sympathy of the House of Representatives and the people of the United States for the victims of the tragic fire that occurred in Ocean Isle Beach, North Carolina, on October 28, 2007.

The Clerk read the title of the resolution.

The text of the resolution is as follows:

H. Res. 787

Whereas in the early morning of October 28, 2007, flames broke out at a beach house in Ocean Isle Beach, North Carolina;

Whereas the fire spread quickly and took the lives of seven college students, six attended the University of South Carolina and one went to Clemson University: Lauren Mahon of Simpsonville, South Carolina; Allison Walden of Chagrin Falls, Ohio; Travis Cale, Justin Anderson and Emily Yelton of Greenville, South Carolina; William Rhea of Florence, South Carolina, and Cassidy Pendley of Chapin, South Carolina;

Whereas 6 University of South Carolina students were injured while escaping the flames and were treated at Brunswick Community Hospital;

Whereas local community members rushed to alert and assist emergency personnel to support the students and their families in the aftermath of the tragedy;

Whereas firefighters, paramedics, police officers, and other emergency personnel from the surrounding communities responded quickly and worked bravely to rescue the injured and extinguish the fire;

Whereas the State of North Carolina and local government officials responded to the fire and its aftermath quickly, effectively, and compassionately;

Whereas the immediate outpouring of support, assistance and compassion from the Nation and South Carolinians is greatly appreciated; and

Whereas the students, faculty, staff, and officials at Clemson University and University of South Carolina have come together as a university community to remember the fallen students and provide strength and support to its respective campuses through this difficult time: Now, therefore, be it

Resolved, That the House of Representatives--

(1) expresses its deepest condolences to the families and friends of Lauren Mahon, Allison Walden, Travis Cale, Justin Anderson, Emily Yelton, William Rhea, and Cassidy Pendley; and offers its hope for the quick and full recovery of those students who were injured in the fire;

(2) expresses immense gratitude for the efforts of countless emergency response personnel, local, State, and Federal officials, health care providers, volunteers, and citizens who have been part of the response; and

(3) expresses its support for all of the students, faculty, administration, and staff at the University of South Carolina and Clemson University as they heal from this tragedy.

12:24 PM EST

Joe Wilson, R-SC 2nd

Mr. WILSON of South Carolina. Mr. Speaker, I want to thank Mr. Clyburn and my colleagues for bringing this resolution to the floor.

I'm deeply saddened by the circumstances we're addressing today. As we have all learned, seven students were killed in a house fire that took place at Ocean Isle Beach, North Carolina, over a week ago. This tragic accident reminds us all how precious life is, and I want to express my condolences to the families and friends of these students.

As a University of South Carolina Law School graduate and a parent of a current Clemson student, I've grown to know the strength and character of these communities. I have had the privilege of getting to know many of their students, faculty, and administrators all my life. Under the leadership of USC president Andrew Sorensen and Clemson president Jim Barker, the students and families of these two universities have found comfort and kinship during this difficult time.

I also want to extend my heartfelt condolences to the Sigma Alpha Epsilon fraternity and the Delta Delta Delta sorority who lost members in this tragic fire. My father and my mother were members of these two USC organizations respectively; and as a member of a fraternity, with three sons in a fraternity, I know the bond that these students and alumni feel for one another and the grief they are experiencing.

South Carolina's media have been very thoughtful, respectful, and helpful in providing tributes to the students. [Page: H12766]

Today, we offer our support and comfort to the students who were injured in this terrible accident. We will continue to pray for their full and speedy recovery.

Additionally, we must recognize the brave members of the local fire departments and emergency personnel, as well as the Ocean Isle Beach citizens who responded to the fire and called for help.

Again, I want to thank my colleague and long-time friend Congressman Jim Clyburn for bringing this resolution to the floor.