The events were barely reported in the media, while police refused to even admit they knew the cause of the fire. No one was ever charged with arson, let alone murder, and when the Gay Community tried to hold memorial services for the dead, churches refused to house them. Eventually just eighty people attended a service for the victims, while many bodies were left unclaimed by families who had disowned them. The priest who eventually conducted the service was condemned for this action by the bishop and sent hate-mail from the public by the sack-full.
George "Mitch" Mitchell managed to escape the blaze, only to discover that his boyfriend Louis Broussard was still trapped inside. Mitch went back into the burning building to rescue Louis, but never emerged. Their charred remains were found clinging together, holding each other as they burned to death. Whether or not the attack was an act of homophobia, a personal vendetta or the actions of maniac, the people who died at the UpStairs Lounge and those they left behind deserved the same rights as anyone else in such circumstances. That they were denied it was almost as heinous a crime as the arson attack in the first place.