herald

Monday 5 December 2016

Berkeley survivor Aoife Beary 'home in weeks'

Aoife Beary
Aoife Beary
Berkeley tragedy

A survivor of the balcony collapse that claimed the lives of six Irish students in the US has spoken to her grandmother for the first time since the tragedy as she recovers from her injuries.

Aoife Beary - who was celebrating her 21st birthday in Berkeley, California on the night of the tragedy - was able to say "hello grandma" in an emotional phone call home.

The Blackrock native (inset) is expected to return home in the next couple of weeks, but her godfather said her condition was not stable enough for an immediate return.

"She is making progress and I think her physical injuries are well on the way to mending, but she still has a lot of recovery to do, rehab is difficult," James O'Doherty said.

"She is able to walk somewhat. She gets up every day and goes to occupational and physical therapy and speech and memory, but her return all depends on getting medical sign-off.

"All the Berkeley kids are being supported by the HSE here and pastoral centre in Berkeley, there is an on-going conversation to ensure medical hand-over is seamless," he told the Herald.

The tragedy in Berkeley on June 16 claimed the lives of students Niccolai Schuster, Eoghan Culligan, Olivia Burke, Lorcan Miller, Eimear Walsh and Ashley Donohoe.

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