What We Know About The Victims Of The Champlain Towers Collapse
Updated July 6, 2021 at 1:07 PM ET
Some 113 people are still unaccounted for in Surfside, Fla., after a 12-story condo building partially collapsed in late June, though so far officials have only confirmed that about 70 were in the tower at the time. Thirty-two people have been confirmed dead, one of whom died in the hospital after being pulled from the building's wreckage. Here is what we know so far about the victims that have been identified by authorities.
Fang, 54, was the first victim identified by the Miami-Dade County Medical Examiner's Office. She was transported to Aventura Hospital and Medical Center, where she was treated for blunt force trauma. Fang succumbed to her injuries and died at the medical center.
She is survived by her son, 15-year-old Jonah Handler, who was rescued from the rubble shortly after the tower collapsed early June 24.
"There are no words to describe the tragic loss of our beloved Stacie. The members of the Fang and Handler family would like to express our deepest appreciation for the outpouring of sympathy, compassion and support we have received," NBC6 in Miami reported. "The many heartfelt words of encouragement and love have served as a much needed source of strength during this devastating time."
She lived in Apartment 1002.
Gladys and Antonio Lozano
Mere hours before the building partially collapsed, Antonio, 83, and his wife, Gladys, 79, were enjoying dinner with their son, Sergio. The couple lived in Apartment 903 and could see Sergio's tower apartment opposite their own.
The couple had known each other for more than 60 years, according to Miami's Local10. They would have celebrated their 59th wedding anniversary in July.
Sergio told the station that peace might be found in knowing that the two "went together and went quickly."
Antonio and Gladys Lozano at one point in time joked that neither wanted the other to die first because they didn't want to live without each other.
Manuel "Manny" LaFont
A native of Houston, 54-year-old LaFont was in apartment 801. He was in the eighth-floor unit with another person also from Houston, who is believed to be a family friend of LaFont's, Houston's ABC13 reported. The identify of the second person is being withheld until the family is notified.
LaFont's former wife, Adriana Lafont, said he was an adoring father of two. They had celebrated Father's Day together just days earlier.
"I lived in that building for 10 years," she told the station. "My kids were born there. They learned how to swim in that pool. We had birthday parties, first communions, baptisms, so many memories."
Leon Oliwkowicz and Christina Beatriz Elvira
The bodies of Oliwkowicz, 80, and Elvira, 74, were discovered by rescuers over the weekend, according to the Miami-Dade County Police.
Originally from Venezuela, the Jewish couple reportedly moved to Florida recently. Their levaya — a traditional Jewish burial — was held Monday.
The pair also reportedly had ties to Chicago, where their daughter, Leah Fouhal, works as the administrator of Yeshivas Ohr Eliyahu – Chabad Mesivta, a Jewish school.
Rabbi Moshe Perlstein, the school's dean, told The Times Of Israel that the couple donated a valuable Torah scroll to the school three years ago in memory of Oliwkowicz's parents.
"He was a person that enjoyed when he gave, he was happy. He loved giving," Perlstein told the online newspaper. "With his wife, they were very dedicated to their children, helping the children, doing anything they could for their children.
"It was their life — giving to the family and giving charity to others," Perlstein said.
A 26-year-old Puerto Rican man with muscular dystrophy, Bermudez's body was pulled from the wreckage two days after the collapse.
"God decided that he wanted one more angel in heaven," his father, also named Luis Bermudez, said on Facebook in Spanish. "I love you and I will love you forever."
Jose J. Ortiz Carlo, a teacher from Bermudez's high school, said, "to call Luis unforgettable is an understatement," the Miami Herald reported.
Bermudez, who used a wheelchair, launched an apparel business called Saucy Boyz Clothing and regularly posted new designs on Instagram. "Just a guy with big dreams and ideas," the account description reads. "Making my way up. Blessed."
The Muscular Dystrophy Association tweeted that Bermudez and his family were "beloved members of the MDA community."
Ana Ortiz, 46
Marcus Joseph Guara, 52
Frank Kleiman, 55
Michael David Altman, 50
Hilda Noriega, 92
Lucia Guara, 10
Emma Guara, 4
Andy Rodriguez, 42
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