Three men with Chicago ties were among the 159 people still unaccounted for one day after a seaside condominium tower collapsed early Thursday near Miami, Florida, trapping residents in rubble and sending a cloud of dust into the air.
The desperate search for survivors at the 12-story Champlain Towers in the town of Surfside continued Friday as rescue crews used both heavy equipment and their own hands in hope of finding spots where people might be trapped.
As of the morning hours, four deaths had been confirmed, and at least 11 injuries had been reported.
One individual who remains missing, Richard Augustine, 77, a Chicago native, planned to fly to Chicago Thursday to spend the weekend with his daughter.
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Juan Mora graduated from Loyola University in 2011 and has worked at Morton Salt's Chicago headquarters since 2016 as manager of East Coast distribution for the company's road salt business.
"We are shocked and deeply saddened to learn that Juan is reported to be one of the more than 150 people missing..." the company said in a statement, in part. "The Morton Salt team remains hopeful for Juan, his family and the other victims of this tragedy and will keep them in our thoughts as rescue efforts continue."
Ilan Naibryf is in his fourth year at the University of Chicago, studying physics and molecular engineering. According to Naibryf's family, the 21-year-old and his girlfriend, Deborah Berezdivin, were inside the building when it came down.
"Our community is so hopeful he will be found," said Lauren Resnick, who was Naibryf's kindergarten teacher.
With the search for survivors in its second day, Resnick said she was praying for some good news - soon.
"When I hear doctors say that people don't have to eat or drink, I want to hear about them going in and saving lives," she said.