Bodies from balcony collapse returned to Ireland


The remains of four of the five Irish nationals who died when a balcony collapsed in Berkeley Tuesday were flown to Ireland Saturday, according to the Irish Consulate of San Francisco.

The consulate issued a statement Saturday on behalf of the families of victims Olivia Burke, Eoghan Culligan, Lorcan Miller, Niccolai Schuster and Eimear Walsh, who were all Irish nationals, according to the Irish Consulate:

“We would like to thank everyone in America and Ireland for their sympathy and support, which has been a tremendous comfort to us at this tragic time.”

Those five victims were here in the U.S. on J-1 visas, which allows visitors to participate in work and study-based exchange programs.

Seven people who were injured in the collapse remained in the hospital on Saturday, according to the consulate.

The Sonoma County Sheriff’s Office released a statement Thursday regarding the sole American victim in the balcony collapse.

Ashley Donohoe, 22, of Rohnert Park, had been working as a forensic assistant intern for the sheriff’s office’s coroner department for the past eight months, according to sheriff’s officials.

Sheriff Steve Freitas expressed his “deepest condolences to the family and friends” of Donohoe in the statement, adding, “She will be missed greatly.”

At 12:41 a.m. on Tuesday, police received reports of the balcony collapse at an apartment complex located at 2020 Kittredge St.

Investigators believe the cause of the collapse may have been because of water damage to the wood that supports the balcony, however they are have not confirmed the theory and are still investigating.

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