Firefighter finds body of his own daughter, 7, in Miami building collapse

2 July 2021, 20:33 | Updated: 2 July 2021, 23:08

20 people have been confirmed dead and 128 are still missing after the building collapse in Miami
20 people have been confirmed dead and 128 are still missing after the building collapse in Miami. Picture: PA

By Kate Buck

A firefighter has found the body of his own daughter in the wreckage of a collapsed residential building in Miami.

Local media reported the father wrapped the seven-year-old in his jacket after she was taken from the rubble, before he placed her on a stretcher.

The devastated father was helped by his brother - the little girl's uncle - and other rescuers. The family have not been identified.

City of Miami Mayor Francis Suarez said: "This tragedy has haunted so many of us because so many of us know somebody who was in the building or affected by this tragedy.

Read more: Pregnant British woman among 159 missing after Miami building collapse

Read more: Moment boy is pulled alive from rubble after Miami building collapse

"Now, not only do we know someone, but this is someone who is a member of our family, of our fire family."

Another two bodies were found in the partially collapsed oceanfront apartment block in Florida, raising the death toll to 22 people with 126 still missing.

Champlain Towers South, a 12-storey beachfront building in Surfside, suddenly came crashing down last week
Champlain Towers South, a 12-storey beachfront building in Surfside, suddenly came crashing down last week. Picture: PA

Miami-Dade County mayor Daniella Levine Cava said the bodies were found on Thursday evening, after concerns about the structure's instability prompted a 15-hour halt to the search for survivors.

Search crews that have been on top of the pile of rubble for the last week stopped work shortly after 2am local time, Miami-Dade county mayor Daniella Levine Cava told a news conference.

The stoppage came on the same day that crews and relatives of those still missing were scheduled to meet President Joe Biden in a visit that many hoped would provide some measure of comfort to a devastated community.

Mr Biden and First Lady Jill Biden planned to thank first responders and search and rescue teams. They also planned to meet the families of victims, White House press secretary Jen Psaki said.

The president's visit comes a week after Champlain Towers South, a 12-storey beachfront building in Surfside, suddenly came crashing down.

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