Firefighter’s Daughter Among Victims Found in Miami Collapse
Rescue crews found the girl’s body while searching the wreckage of Champlain Towers South, officials said on Friday.
The 7-year-old daughter of a Miami firefighter is among the victims.
Condo Collapse Deaths Include a Firefighter’s 7-Year-Old Daughter
Officials in Surfside, Fla., said on Friday that the death toll rose to 20 in the collapse of Champlain Towers South, and that two bodies recovered overnight included the young daughter of a Miami firefighter. As many as 128 people remain unaccounted for.
“Last night, we did discover two additional victims. Tragically, one of those victims was the 7-year-old daughter of a city of Miami firefighter. And it goes without saying that every night since this last Wednesday has been immensely difficult for everybody, and particularly the families that have been impacted, but last night was uniquely different. It was truly different, and more difficult for our first responders. We have now confirmed 20 deaths, 188 people are accounted for and 128 are unaccounted for. And you’ll notice that the number of accounted for people has increased.” “You know, every victim we remove, it’s difficult, it’s very difficult. We try to respect, we have a whole process in regards to how we remove each individual that we come across, you know, unfortunately, you know, we haven’t been able to remove any survivors yet. But it’s very difficult, and last night was even more, you know, when removing a fellow firefighter’s daughter, and that’s just where I want to emphasize the emotion. You know, what we’re feeling, you know, as firefighters, we do what we do, you know, and it’s kind of a calling. And we always say that. But it still takes a toll.”
Officials in Surfside, Fla., said on Friday that the death toll rose to 20 in the collapse of Champlain Towers South, and that two bodies recovered overnight included the young daughter of a Miami firefighter. As many as 128 people remain unaccounted for.CreditCredit…Mark Humphrey/Associated Press
July 2, 2021, 7:12 p.m. ET
Rescue crews found the body of the 7-year-old daughter of a Miami firefighter while searching the wreckage of Champlain Towers South, officials said on Friday, when the known death toll rose, by four, to 22. As many as 126 people remain unaccounted for.
The discovery of the girl was especially painful for rescue crews, many of whom have labored for more than a week in Surfside, Fla., without finding any survivors since the day of the collapse.
“Every victim we remove, it’s difficult,” said Chief Alan Cominsky of Miami-Dade Fire Rescue. “Last night was even more when we were removing a fellow firefighter’s daughter.” He added: “As firefighters, we do what we do. It’s kind of a calling. And we always say that. But it still takes a toll.”
Elad Edri, the deputy commander of an Israeli team working at the site, said police officers and firefighters formed two columns to flank the girl’s removal from the debris. Mr. Edri said that once she had been taken away, the rescuers embraced and wept.
“I think this tragedy has haunted so many of us because so many of us know someone who was in the building or affected by this tragedy,” Mayor Francis Suarez of Miami said at a news conference.
Also among the victims were Maricoy Obias-Bonnefoy — known as Maria — and her husband, Claudio Bonnefoy, according to Mr. Bonnefoy’s daughter Pascale Bonnefoy.
Pascale Bonnefoy, who contributes to The New York Times from Chile, said she was relieved to receive the news on Friday because she had been worried that Hurricane Elsa would topple the remaining structure and delay the recovery for months.
“They were found together around the bedroom area,” she said. “They said most everyone they found were found near their bedroom areas, which means, fortunately, people didn’t really have time to react and make a frantic run for the hallway or the elevator.”