Surfside Mayor: 12-year-old praying near collapse site awaits answers on missing family members

Florida

TAMPA (WFLA) – Surfside Mayor Charles Burkett spoke Tuesday about a young girl he met over the weekend at the family reunification center who was seen praying.

Mayor Burkett says twelve-year-old Elisheva Cohen was standing near the site of the tragedy in Surfside late Monday night reading Psalms on her phone when Mayor Burkett came over to her.

Her father and uncle lived in the building.

Soroya Cohen told 8 On Your Side last Thursday her husband Dr. Brad Cohen and his brother Dr. Gary Cohen were in an 11th floor condo when the tower collapsed. 

The 12-year-old split time before the collapse living with one parent in the Champlain Towers and staying with the other who lives in a nearby building in Surfside.

Burkett says the young girl’s brother came from Israel and says their mom is dealing with financial hardships, as the father is the main provider.

Mayor Burkett said donations to Support Surfside are extremely important to help families like Ellie’s who have been affected by the building collapse.

Since Thursday, Support Surfside has raised nearly $2 million.

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