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Berkeley balcony collapse: Tragedy fund raises over $30k in less than a day for students and families

By Denise Calnan

Published 18/06/2015

Mourners lay candles during a vigil for six Irish students in California (AP)
Mourners lay candles during a vigil for six Irish students in California (AP)
People embrace at a memorial for those who lost their lives after a balcony gave way in Berkeley, California on June 17, 2015. Dry rot and overcrowding could be responsible for the collapse of a balcony at a California apartment building, sending five Irish citizens and an Irish-American woman plummeting to their deaths, media reports said on June 17. At least seven other people were injured in the accident in Berkeley, which took place in the early hours of June 16 during a 21st birthday party. AFP PHOTO / JOSH EDELSONJosh Edelson/AFP/Getty Images

A fund set up to help raise money for the families of the six tragic Berkeley victims has raised over $30,000 in less than 24 hours.

Hundreds of people are donating to the official account which has been established by the Irish Immigration Pastoral Centre in San Francisco.

The tax-deductable donations raised will be used to 'support and assist the immediate needs of the families and students in Berkeley'.

The page, called 'Irish J1 Berkeley Tragedy Fund' has already seen hundreds of people donate money to the bereaved families.

It features a photo of a group of students at the vigil for the six victims who were killed when the fourth-storey balcony of a building collapsed in the early hours of Tuesday morning.

Seven other students were injured in the incident, two are still reported to be in a 'critical' condition in hospital.

The deceased were named as Irish students Eimear Walsh, Lorcan Miller, Eoghan Culligan, Niccolai Schuster, Olivia Burke and Irish-American citizen Ashley Donohue.

The page reads: "Early in the morning on June 16, 2015, several Irish J1 students in Berkeley, Calif., were involved in a balcony collapse which resulted in six fatalities and seven serious injuries.

"This account has been established to raise funds for the students affected by this tragedy and their families, and we ask that you donate what you can.  Your generosity is greatly appreciated.

"Your tax-deductable donations will be used to support and assist the immediate needs of the families and students in Berkeley.

"Your messages of support and concern are all very much appreciated.  We ask that you please keep the victims, their families, friends and all involved in your thoughts and prayers.

Berkeley Tragedy Victims' Fund

The Irish Immigration Pastoral Centre in San Francisco has set up an online account to raise funds for the students affected by this tragedy and to assist the immediate needs of their families.

You can contribute to the fund here.

Irish Independent

Irish Independent

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