SURFSIDE, Fla. (AP) – Police have identified another victim of the Champlain Towers South condo building collapse in Surfside.
24-year-old Anastasia Gromova was identified, according to her family and police on Wednesday. The young Canadian had just been accepted to a program teaching English in Japan and was visiting the condo for one last hurrah with friend Michelle Pazos. Gromova’s body was recovered three days ago and was one of the last to be identified.
Her grieving family rushed from Canada after the collapse and had spent weeks in agony waiting in Miami.
“It just makes it real and hard but on a different level. At least we can move on now.” her sister Anna Gromova told The Associated Press, describing her sister as a bright star that fell fast. “We will remember her forever.”
Her parents said she was bright, always on the go, constantly smiling and unafraid to take on difficult challenges.
“It’s hard because you knew the loss was preventable and still nothing was prevented,” her sister said.
The rubble that will be key evidence is being stored in a Miami-area warehouse, with the rest in nearby vacant lots, said the receiver, attorney Michael Goldberg. All of that will be preserved as possible evidence for the lawsuits and for other experts to review, he said.
The National Institute of Standards and Technology is leading a federal probe into the collapse, according to a receiver handling the finances on behalf of the condominium board.
“It may take years for their report to become public,” Goldberg said of the NIST probe.
The building was just undergoing its 40-year recertification process when it collapsed. That came three years after an engineer warned of serious structural issues needing immediate attention. Most of the concrete repair and other work had yet to be started.