Florida building collapse: First funerals held after twelve days

Florida building collapse: First funerals held after twelve days

Twelve days after the tragedy, the first funerals for victims of the Florida building collapse were conducted.

Marcus Guara, 52, Ana Guara, 42, and their daughters Lucia, 10, and Emma, four, were among the 36 individuals who died when Champlain Towers South fell on June 24.

More than 109 individuals remain unaccounted for, with 70 known to have been inside the building.

Rescue operations are still underway, but no one has been discovered alive since the morning of the first day.

Even while experts warn that the chances of finding survivors are very low, crews are still carefully sifting through the debris of the 12-story building in Surfside, just north of Miami.

The funerals for the Guaras were held only a few streets away at St Joseph’s Catholic Church, where they had worshipped.

Three coffins were taken to that church. The sisters were buried together in a casket adorned with pink and purple ribbons by the family. They are among the collapse’s youngest known casualties.

Marcus Guara, a sales manager who collected money for many organisations, was the first to be discovered two days after the fall. Four days later, Ana Guara and their two daughters were discovered.

Speaking at the church, Mr Guara’s cousin Peter Milián expressed his relief that the couple had died with their children.

“As ironic as it may sound I truly believe God watched over them by not making them suffer without Lucia and Emma,” he said.

Mr Guara’s sister, Annette Guara Hurst, told WSVN a few days ago that the family was pleased that all four had been recovered since “not too many people have had that blessing.”

According to Miami-Dade County Fire Chief Alan Cominsky, rescuers have cleared more than 124 tonnes (five million pounds) of debris from the scene thus far. They had not, however, discovered any “livable areas.”

He told a news conference on Tuesday, “Unfortunately, we are not seeing anything positive.”

High winds from Storm Elsa, which is coming from the south, have delayed rescue operations even further.

“The wind is hampering the large cranes moving very heavy debris,” Surfside Mayor Charles Burket told reporters.

In the meanwhile, authorities are looking at other tower blocks in the vicinity for any structural issues.

The reason of the 40-year-old Champlain Towers South’s collapse is unknown. However, a 2018 examination found “serious” faults in the original design.

The building association’s board has said it will appoint an “independent receiver… to oversee the legal and claims process”.

Read more: https://pakobserver.net/international/

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